THE Isle of Wight NHS Trust is out of financial special measures.

The trust was placed into special measures in 2019, due to an increased deficit of £13 million and ongoing financial underperformance.

It led to health bosses at St Mary's Hospital receiving support from other NHS bodies and a financial improvement director appointed.

NHS England and NHS Improvement have now recognised the progress made by the trust and decided to remove it from financial special measures.

The trust has broken even for the past two financial years as well as improving services.

It also had more than £90 million worth of debt written off by the government, in a financial reset, to help NHS trusts cope during the height of the Covid pandemic.

The Isle of Wight trust's director of finance, Jo Gooch, said she was pleased with the news, especially following the recognition from the Care Quality Commission that the trust was now 'good'.

She said: "The quality of care we provide and how well our finances are managed go hand in hand."

Ms Gooch said the trust's strategy sets out how they aim to achieve high-quality, compassionate care and make sure the services the Island relies on are sustainable.

A concern has been raised, however, about a potential £22.5 million deficit the trust faces at the end of this financial year.

It is based on a plan the trust made, responding to current pressures in the hospital, but as the country starts to come out of the Covid pandemic, NHS funding is reducing.

Speaking at the trust board meeting last week, Ms Gooch said the level of capacity planned for is greater than the funding would allow, so the plan would be reassessed in the coming weeks to try and reduce the deficit.

Interim trust chief executive, Darren Cattell, said the trust must be mindful it needs to return to efficiency and productivity as it goes forward while maintaining quality improvements.