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Northern Devon Healthcare Trust was established in 1991.

On 1st April 2001, it changed from being a combined Trust to an acute Trust. This means it provides hospital services which require diagnostic tests, treatment and follow-up care.

The smaller community hospitals in the area (containing General Practitioner and Care of the Elderly beds) are now part of the North Devon Primary Care Trust. The Primary Care Trust also manages community care services like district nursing and health visiting and a range of services such as physiotherapy and occupational therapy, which may be based at North Devon District Hospital. The Primary Care Trust also works to co-ordinate the activities of local GP Practices.

Mental health services for North Devon and the areas around Exeter and Torquay are now managed by Devon Partnership Trust. These include inpatient facilities at North Devon District Hospital and Bideford, which also has a Learning Disabilities Unit.

North Devon is a popular retirement area. More than 20% of the population are over 65 years old and nearly 10% are over 75 (UK averages are 16% and 7.5%, respectively). The total local population has increased by about 1% per year in the last decade and now stands at approximately 160,000 However,. there are the many dwellers round the borders of the Trust's catchment area and, at any one time, about 400 Cornish residents on our waiting lists. Then there are the holidaymakers. It is difficult to predict how many will turn up at Accident and Emergency departments between April and September.

With approximately 1,650 staff, Northern Devon Healthcare Trust is the largest employer in the area. In terms of the pay bill alone, we contribute nearly £120,000 each day to the local economy. The annual budget is in the region of £60 million.

The Trust currently has a 3 star Performance Rating. The Department of Health awards up to 3 stars, based on a range of indicators of access to services, speed and effectiveness of treatment, cleanliness / quality of environment and financial competence.

Northern Devon Healthcare Trust is directed by the Trust Board, which meets monthly to determine strategy and provide guidance to those managing day-to-day operations. The Board has adopted Codes of Conduct and Accountability recommended by the NHS Executive. Audit, Risk, Clinical Governance and Remuneration and Terms of Service Committees are well established. Our services are continually reviewed to ensure that patients and public receive appropriate care and attention.

The Trust Board is led by a Chairman (appointed by the Secretary of State for Health) who works with 5 Non-Executive, 5 Executive and 2 Associate Directors. The Non-Executive Directors exercise a part-time role, providing experience and expertise, usually gained from working in organisations outside the NHS.

The Executive and Associate Directors are led by the Chief Executive and combine their role as board members with regular management responsibility. They are joined on the Trust's Management Board by 4 Clinical Directors and 2 General Managers.

The North Devon Primary Care Trust was formed in April 2001.

Since it was formed the trust has worked to develop the services of the 5 Community Hospitals in the area; South Molton, Ilfracombe, Holsworthy, Torrington & Bideford.

The Trust also manages a resource centre in Lynton and a Health Centre in Barnstaple, District Nursing, Health Visiting, School Nursing as well as therapies, such as Occupational Health, Physiotherapy, Podiatry & Speech and Language Therapy.

North Devon is a popular retirement area. More than 20% of the population are over 65 years old and nearly 10% are over 75 (UK averages are 16% and 7.5% respectively). The total local population has increased by about 1% per year in the last decade and now stands at approximately 160,000. However, there are many dwellers around the borders of the Trust's catchment area and with the swell in population each season of the holidaymakers, it is difficult to predict the activity that will take place around our Minor Injuries Unit centres, GP Surgeries and Health Centre.

The area the trust covers stretches around the North Devon Coast across as far as the Somerset County boundary and down to Cornwall. It is a mainly rural area with the population centred around the main towns of Barnstaple, Bideford and Ilfracombe.

With a budget of £154 million the trust manages 22 GP practices within the catchment area with 150 GPs. The practices work in partnership with a full range of primary and community care health professionals. The PCT is also responsible for 80 Dentists in 30 practices, 26 pharmacists and 35 opticians working within 15 practices across the area.

The North Devon PCT is the largest of the four PCTs in North and East Devon Health and Social Care Community and is coterminous with two District Councils in North Devon and Torridge. Mental Health services for North Devon and the areas around Devon and Torquay are now managed by Devon Partnership Trust. These include the inpatient facilities of North Devon District Hospital and Bideford which also has a Learning Disabilities Unit.

The Trust currently has a 2 Star Performance Rating. The Department of Health awards up to 3 stars based on a range of indicators including access to services, speed and effectiveness of treatment , quality of environment and financial competence.

The North Devon PCT is directed by the board which meets bi-monthly to determine strategy and provide guidance to those managing day-to-day operations.

The trust Board is led by a chairman (appointed by the Secretary of State for Health) who works with 6 Non-Executives and 5 Executive directors. The Non-Executive Directors exercise a part time role, providing experience and expertise usually gained from working in organisations outside the NHS.

The chief executive and directors combine their role as board members with regular management responsibility. They are joined on the Trust's management board by 2 general managers.

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