§ Mr. Milburn
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to his answer of 16 January,Official Report, column 553, how many trusts have been assessed in respect of their long-term financial viability; and what has been the outcome in each case. 
§ Mr. Horam
The financial viability of all trusts is assessed as a part of each trust's annual business planning cycle. The outcome in the vast majority of cases has been the continued existence of the trusts as they were established.
Trusts are merged or reconfigured for a number of operational reasons. Those which have resulted largely from concerns over their long-term financial viability are:West Dorset Community Health NHS trust with West Dorset Mental Health NHS trust to form the Dorset Community NHS trust.Royal Liverpool University NHS trust and Broadgreen NHS trust to form Royal Liverpool University and Broadgreen NHS trust.
There are also two further proposals subject to public consultation for the following trusts:Louth and District Healthcare NHS trust and Lincoln Hospital NHS trust.Royal Free NHS trust and the Royal National Throat, Nose and Ear Hospital NHS trust.