Officials from the trust that runs Ipswich and Colchester Hospitals have insisted that chief executive Nick Hulme's new role in Norwich should not affect patients here.

Mr Hulme has been chief executive of Ipswich Hospital since January 2013 and three years later combined it with a similar role at Colchester General. 

In 2018 the trusts running the two hospitals came together to form the East Suffolk and North Essex Foundation Trust (ESNEFT) with Mr Hulme as its CEO.

Over the last 10 years there have been major changes at Ipswich Hospital with new developments and treatments.

This weekend it was announced he would also be taking over as interim chief executive of the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital from next month.

This is a temporary appointment, for six months, while that trust looks for a new permanent chief.

But officials at ESNEFT are confident that Mr Hulme's new role will not impact on their operation.

He did not apply for the new role - he was approached by senior NHS officials. And it is understood that the Norfolk and Norwich is currently facing similar changes to those seen at Ipswich and Colchester over the last decade.

Both Ipswich and Colchester have major development projects under way at present, and Mr Hulme's new appointment should have no effect on them whatsoever.

Mr Hulme said: “I will be providing leadership to the Norfolk and Norwich University NHS Foundation Trust for a short time while a new permanent chief executive is appointed.

"I will continue to be chief executive of ESNEFT and will be supported in my role by the executive directors at both Trusts.

"I will take up this additional role as interim Chief Executive at NNUH in August and expect this to end in February 2024”.