New hospital chief revealed

PUBLISHED: 13:00 21 July 2015

James Rimmer.

James Rimmer.


A NEW chief executive has been appointed at Weston Area Health NHS Trust, less than a week after the previous chief left for a new role in Wales.

As reported in the Mercury last week, former WAHT chief executive Nick Wood exited Weston General Hospital on July 3 after spearheading substantial improvements at the Grange Road site since his appointment in 2013.

Shortly before he arrived, the hospital was heavily criticised in a Care Quality Commission report, but new initiatives to improve service quality and patient safety have resulted in dramatic improvement.

WAHT chairman Graham Paine said last week how Mr Wood will be ‘missed’ – however, a new chief executive appointment made this week has seen Mr Paine speaking of his confidence for the hospital’s future direction.

James Rimmer, director of strategy and transformation at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, is the man who will succeed Mr Wood.

He will join WAHT on August 3, with director of finance Rob Little taking charge until then.

Mr Paine said: “James is known as an individual with a broad strategic vision matched with a keen operational insight which I am sure will maintain Weston Area Health NHS Trust’s continued improving performance.

“He has enjoyed a long and very successful career in the NHS. His well-developed network, especially across the South West region will put him in good stead as we continue to shape our trust.

“The board of directors are very much looking forward to welcoming him into the organisation.”

Mr Rimmer (pictured) will now be in post to oversee the likely acquistion of WAHT by Taunton’s Musgrove Park Hospital, as work continues behind the scenes on the new link-up.

Mr Rimmer said: “I am delighted to be joining WAHT and look forward to working with staff across the trust to provide the best care for patients.

“I will continue to work alongside colleagues in health and social care to serve the people of Weston and North Somerset and look forward to working with all local stakeholders to take the trust to the next stage of its development.”

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