Trust chief executive to retire
Airedale NHS Foundation Trust chief executive Bridget Fletcher has announced that she is retiring in May this year, after a long and successful career in the NHS.
Bridget originally trained as a nurse and moved into leadership after 20 years of clinical practice, 12 of those as a ward sister. She joined Airedale in 2005 as director of nursing, a post she held until 2010 when she was appointed as chief executive. During her tenure she has overseen the development of the Trust’s cutting edge telemedicine service, as well as the building and opening of the new state of the art Emergency Department. Under Bridget’s leadership the Trust has been named as one of the CHKS Top40 Hospitals for performance and quality six times.
“I didn’t come to the decision lightly,” she explains. “I care deeply for the NHS and have very much enjoyed working for Airedale, but the time is now right for me to retire.
“I am proud of everything we have achieved – and keep on achieving – as a Trust. None of it would have been possible without our fantastic, dedicated staff who look after people when they’re at their most vulnerable, and the teams who support them to do so. It’s always the people who make a job enjoyable and I will miss our staff most of all.”
Andrew Gold, acting chair of the Trust, said: “Bridget has always focused on delivering high quality patient services to the local population and embraced innovation to enable Airedale to sustain that.
“Bridget has led Airedale to a respected position in the health economy locally, regionally and nationally, which will enable the Trust to continue to flourish well into the future. I know a decision to retire now will not have been an easy one for her, but fully understand her choice and thank her for her enormous contribution.”
Airedale’s Board of Directors will now begin the process of recruiting a successor.