Southend Hospital has a permanent chief executive.

Following an 'intensive' selection process, current interim chief executive Sue Hardy, who has 30 years experience in the NHS in a variety of management, nursing, and midwifery roles, has got the post full time.

The hospital says she has a detailed understanding of how to improve the quality of services.

Prior to joining Southend University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust as chief nurse in April 2011 she held a number of director posts. Sue is also a council member of the East of England NHS Clinical Senate.

“I am delighted to have been appointed as chief executive of Southend University Hospital,” she said. “The Trust has an excellent reputation for the quality of its services, as well as extremely talented and dedicated staff. I look forward to working with my board colleagues and with our local health partners to ensure that the Trust remains sustainable for the future and continues to deliver excellent patient outcomes.”

Southend University Hospital chairman, Alan Tobias OBE, added: “We are confident following this rigorous process that Sue Hardy is the right person to take the Trust forward and to deliver an extremely challenging agenda. We look forward to working with her.”