HUDDERSFIELD Royal Infirmary is all set to plough ahead with a bid to become a foundation hospital after getting top marks in NHS performance tables today.
Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Trust - which runs the infirmary, Calderdale Royal Hospital and St Luke's Hospital, Huddersfield - was awarded the top-rating three stars for the third year in a row.
Only hospital trusts with three stars are eligible to seek foundation status.
A decision whether to continue with its bid for foundations status will be made by the trust board of directors at a meeting tomorrow.
Diane Whittingham, chief executive of Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Trust said: "The trust is delighted to be rated three-star for the third year running.
" This is entirely down to the hard work of our staff, who continue to go the extra mile in delivering patient services in Calderdale and Huddersfield.
"Despite this continued high performance, we still face huge challenges in meeting patients' expectations and the targets set by the Government, which mean we can never become complacent."
The Commission for Health Improvement published performance ratings for hospitals across the country today.
Four hospitals shortlisted for foundation status by the Government lost their top ratings of three stars, meaning they can no longer apply to be among the first foundation hospitals due to be up and running by April 2004.
Health Secretary John Reid said: "35% of all hospitals are now in the top three-star rating and 75% are in the top two ratings."
Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, which covers Dewsbury District Hospital, received only one star.
The tables came under fierce criticism from the British Medical Association and opposition parties. Shadow Health Secretary Dr Liam Fox said: "The star ratings system is ludicrous and should be scrapped."