§ Mr. Dobson
To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether Sunderland and Homerton NHS trusts will be granted foundation status. 
§ Mr. Hutton
[holding answer 9 December 2002]: Applications to become national health service foundation trusts will be invited from acute and specialist NHS trusts that were awarded three stars in the performance ratings announced in July 2002. City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Trust and Homerton University Hospitals NHS Trusts are eligible to apply.
We will shortly issue a publication that will set out our detailed proposals on establishing NHS foundation trusts. Alongside this, or shortly after publication, we will invite applications to become NHS foundation trusts.