A HOSPITAL trust chairman is stepping down later this year.
Irene Dibben, chairman of East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs the Conquest and Eastbourne DGH, has decided to retire and will leave on March 31.
She took up her current role in 2008, having previously joined the trust as a non-executive director in 2003.
Mrs Dibben said: “It has been a great honour to lead this organisation for the past three years and to serve the local community, on the board, for the past seven years.
“I have enjoyed my time immensely and have always been impressed by the dedication and commitment of staff to do their very best for patients.”
She said ‘great progress’ had been made in reducing patients’ waiting times.
Mrs Dibben added: “Infection rates have significantly reduced and our clinicians have developed new and innovative procedures and techniques.”
She also praised the ‘marvellous group’ of hospital volunteers and chaplaincy team in supporting both the Conquest and Eastbourne DGH.
She said: “Their commitment to raising money on our behalf and their generosity is greatly appreciated and admired.”
Darren Grayson, the trust’s chief executive, said: “It has been a pleasure working with Irene. She is a popular chairman and will be missed.
“Her passion for the trust was evident in everything she did and the organisation certainly moved forward during her time as chairman. We wish her the very best in the future.”
Meanwhile Charles Everett has been re-appointed as chairman of NHS Hastings and Rother by the Appointments Commission.
He has held the post since February 2007 after retiring as a director at the Home Office.
His re-appointment covers the period from February 1 to March 31, 2013 when, under the government’s reforms of the NHS, Primary Care Trusts will cease to exist.
He said: “We have a crucial role to play in supporting the local NHS through this period of change.
“We will also continue to work closely with GPs to ensure that the transition to the new system is as smooth as possible, so that patients continue to receive the best possible care.”