The scandal-hit Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust is to become the first foundation trust in the country to be put into administration, regulators confirmed.
Monitor, the NHS Foundation Trust regulator, said that it has appointed two trust special administrators to “safeguard the future of health services” currently provided at the trust.
The move comes after Monitor concluded that Mid Staffordshire was “clinically and financially unsustainable” after it was revealed it would need a subsidy of £73 million over five years to keep it afloat.
Clinician Dr Hugo Mascie-Taylor along with Alan Bloom of Ernst and Young will take over the running of the trust.
Last year, South London Healthcare NHS Trust became the first ever NHS trust to be put under the care of a special administrator after it started losing around £1.3 million a week.
Mid Staffordshire is the first foundation trust - a supposed flagship marker of excellence in the health service - to face the same fate.
David Bennett, Monitor chief executive David Bennett, said: “It is important that people in Mid Staffordshire know that they can still access services as usual at Stafford and Cannock hospitals while the trust special administration process is on-going.
“We have taken this decision to make sure that patients in the Mid Staffordshire area have the services they need in the future.”
Monitor said that the current executive team will report to the special administrators.
The administrators will work with commissioners and other local healthcare organisations to produce a plan for the “reorganisation” and “sustainable delivery” of health services.
The special administrators will be given 45 working days to design a way of providing services to patients in the area “that is sustainable in the long term”.
Their plan will be subject to a public consultation and services at the hospitals in Stafford and Cannock will continue to run as normal until a final decision is reached.
In its statement, the regulator said: “Monitor took the decision to make the appointment after experts in a contingency planning team concluded that the trust was neither clinically nor financially sustainable in its current form.
“The appointment has been made following consultation with the Health Secretary and an order authorising the appointment was laid before Parliament today.”
The trust was at the centre of a public inquiry into the “disaster” at Stafford Hospital where hundreds of patients may have died needlessly after they were “routinely neglected.”
The Francis Report highlighted the “appalling and unnecessary suffering of hundreds of people” between 2005 and 2009.