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Neil Dardis has been named as the next chief executive of Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust.

The decision to appoint Neil to the top job at the trust that runs Frimley Park, Wexham Park and Heatherwood hospitals comes after current chief executive Sir Andrew Morris announced that he would be retiring from the trust in February 2018.

Neil is currently chief executive of Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust.

The decision was approved by the Frimley Health’s Council of Governors at a special meeting on Wednesday 29 November. It was the final stage of a rigorous selection process that tested the leadership qualities and abilities of shortlisted candidates.

FHFT chairman Pradip Patel said: “We have been very lucky to have one of the best leaders in the NHS at our helm for the past three decades. Sir Andrew has helped guide the trust to providing some of the best services that the NHS can offer.

“I believe we have been equally fortunate to have secured the services of Neil. We had some fantastic candidates to choose from and I would like to thank every one of them for giving us so much to think about.

“After careful consideration we felt that Neil represented the best match for our organisation as we enter a new phase of delivering health and care to our community.

“We will be keeping staff and the public updated on when Neil will be able to join us. I am really looking forward to working with him to realise our vision of providing excellent health and care that is fit for the future.”

Neil has been the chief executive at Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust since April 2015, having joined as deputy chief executive and chief operating officer in 2013. He led the way by rapidly improving performance and developing system-wide change across Buckinghamshire in partnership with other health and care organisations. His current trust provides acute, community and specialist services across multi-site locations. Neil also leads the Buckinghamshire Accountable Care System, which is one of the eight exemplars, similar to the Frimley Health and Care one.

During his 20 year career in the NHS he has also worked in senior management roles at East and North Hertfordshire, Royal Free London, and Hammersmith Hospitals NHS trusts.

Neil said: “It is an honour and a privilege to be joining the team at Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust. Whilst I recognise the challenges facing the NHS in the future, Frimley is a fantastic organisation with a reputation for delivering excellence and I am excited by the opportunities we have to ensure that we provide outstanding care for the communities we serve.”

Sir Andrew has been chief executive of Frimley Park Hospital and subsequently Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust, since 1989 and is the longest serving hospital chief executive in the NHS.