The Appointments Commission closure could affect NHS charities

Their trustees are currently appointed by the quango

The Appointments Commission
The Appointments Commission

NHS charities might be left without the means to appoint trustees as a result of the abolition of the quango that currently does this.

The Appointments Commission, which exists mainly to find staff for the health sector, will be shut down as part of the government's review of quangos.

Most NHS charities currently have their associated NHS trust as the sole trustee. Many considered changing their governance arrangements last year, fearing that new laws would make them consolidate their assets on the trusts' balance sheets. Only one eventually did so.

Jonathan Brinsden, a partner at specialist charity law firm Bircham Dyson Bell, said the abolition of the Appointments Commission was an opportunity to change the process by which NHS charity trustees were appointed.

"This would reduce regulation and stop taxpayers' money being spent administering charities," he said. "It would also mean an end to the painful contortions these public sector trustees have to go through to avoid a conflict of interest."

He said charities should put this proposal to Lord Hodgson's taskforce, established last month to cut red tape in the third sector.

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