National health service trusts are independent employers in their own right and are responsible for employment decisions about their staff, including chief executives and other executive directors, in accordance with general employment law and human resources (HR) best practice.
NHS Employers is the body that provides HR advice and guidance to NHS organisations.
There are separate arrangements for foundation trusts. “The NHS Foundation Trust Code of Governance” published by Monitor sets out a common overarching framework for the corporate governance of NHS foundation trusts and complements the statutory and regulatory obligations on them.
The NHS chief executive wrote to NHS trusts and primary care trusts in October 2006 restating the importance of external assessors in the recruitment of senior staff. The letter can be found at:
NHS trusts may pay their staff such remuneration and allowances, and employ them on such terms and conditions, as they consider appropriate.
The Department introduced a “Pay framework for very senior managers in strategic and special Health Authorities, Primary Care Trusts and Ambulance Trusts” in 2006 (updated in 2007), copies of which are available in the Library. Although it does not apply to NHS trusts, they are free to adopt its principles.