WYRE Forest MP Mark Garnier has backed the controversial new Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust chairman to turn the ailing service’s fortunes around.

Mr Garnier met with Sir David Nicholson and said he is confident his “wealth of experience” will benefit healthcare in the county and gave him his full support.

Sir David retired from the role of NHS England chief executive four years ago - on a £1.9m pension pot - after campaigners called for his resignation over failings at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust which saw people die as a result of poor care.

The Tory MP said he had his own concerns about the appointment – which was announced last month - and has held a meeting with Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt about it, with a follow-up meeting taking place later this week.

Mr Garnier said: “I was concerned about the appointment of Sir David given his previous connection with the Mid Staffs NHS scandal under the previous, Labour government.

“However, during my previous meeting with Jeremy Hunt, we discussed Sir David's merits and agreed that he brings a wealth of experience, significant lessons learnt, and a strong desire to succeed in Worcestershire.

“I was pleased that I was reassured of these points when I met Sir David on Friday (June 8).

"Sir David has been appointed on a year's contract and to continue longer than that, he will have to undergo a public application process. He has a serious job to do with our local acute hospital trust - a trust that continues to be in special measures.

"Having met Sir David, I am confident that he has the ability and the desire to succeed and I have offered to help him, in every way, to succeed.

“But whilst he recognises the challenge, he also recognises the brilliant staff who work at the trust and is hopeful to be able to turn the trust round.

“I wish him every best wishes and help in his endeavour. He can count on my full support."

Sir David’s appointment angered Wyre Forest Labour who called for the decision to be “reversed immediately” given his record at Mid Staffs. They added the trust needed more Government funding to address the problems it faces.