Foundation Trusts

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What is an NHS foundation trust?

Foundation trusts are a different type of NHS organisation with a stronger local influence.

Foundation trusts are part of the NHS and continue to treat patients according to NHS principles of free healthcare according to need, not the ability to pay.  Being a foundation trust means being able to provide and manage services to meet the needs and priorities of the local community. 

However, foundation trusts will still be accountable to Parliament.  The freedoms given to NHS foundation trusts are underpinned by a framework of national standards which will safeguard quality and protect the public interest.

How can I get involved?

Local people, patients and NHS staff are all eligible to become members of their local NHS foundation trust. There are three different levels of membership within the Trust, with Level 3 the most active membership role. Members are able to stand for election to the Board of Governors of the Trust. The elected Board of Governors ensures that Trust directors are held to account, on behalf of Trust members.

Cumbria has 2 Foundation Trusts:

Cumbria also has:

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