WORCESTERSHIRE Acute Hospitals Trust is not out of the woods yet, although moving out of special measures is a major step.

For nearly four years the trust has been in the doldrums, struggling to cope with ever-growing numbers of patients and dwindling resources.

Matthew Hopkins stood down from Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust in the midst of its own financial troubles before taking up in Worcestershire.

And the key point for him, and for MP Robin Walker, is that he has successfully steered that troubled trust out of special measures, which he believes is crucial in attracting specialist staff and funding in his new job.

His plan of action when he arrived in January was to simplify matters, to give staff two or three specific objectives to focus on, and so far it appears to have worked.

A major issue has always been A&E, and Mr Hopkins accepts that there is a long road ahead to improve its efficiency if the trust has any hope in bringing in the sort of government funding it needs to expand the emergency department. Time will tell.