The trust managing hospitals serving Redbridge has appointed a new finance director.

Jeff Buggle replaces Rob Cooper in the role at Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust (BHRUT), which is currently £38 million in the red.

It was recently referred to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt after its plan to deal with the debt was not deemed effective.

The trust has also been criticised for its standards of care at King George Hospital in Goodmayes and Queen’s Hospital in Romford.

BHRUT chief executive, Matthew Hopkins, said: “This appointment is absolutely crucial to ensure we begin to improve our finances.

“Jeff will be a key member of the team that will deliver our Improvement Plan, which has been developed with the help and support of all our local NHS and council partners.

“As a leadership team we are working hard to tackle a £38million deficit and to improve the care we provide for residents of Barking, Havering, Redbridge and further afield.”

“For example, we plan to substantially reduce the number of agency staff we use. This will save millions of pounds, but we also know it will improve care for patients by having permanent, dedicated staff on our wards.”

Jeff Buggle who has been a financial director for 19 years, was previously the director of finance at East Kent University Hospitals Foundation Trust.

He said: “I’m delighted to be joining the BHRUT, and I’m very much looking forward to being part of a team that is really committed to improving the care they provide for local people.

“These are my local hospitals so I have a vested interest in ensuring that they are successful. I’m also looking forward to meeting some old friends and colleagues.”