There are 225 acute and mental health trusts eligible to apply for National Health Service foundation trust (NHS FT) status.
As at 1 March 2009 there are 115 NHS FTs.
Applications for NHS FT status must receive the support of the Secretary of State before being passed to Monitor, the independent regulator of NHS FTs, for consideration. In 2009 the following NHS trusts have asked the Secretary of State to support their applications:
George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust;
Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership NHS Trust;
Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Trust;
Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust; and
University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Trust.