As a Foundation Trust, Dorset HealthCare has a Council of Governors who are Members of the Trust elected to represent the views and interests of the public, patients and staff, as well as carers and other stakeholders.

The Council of Governors meets regularly and holds the Trust Board to account for its work.

Governors are available to hear your views or concerns about Dorset HealthCare's services. If you are a Member of Dorset Healthcare and would like to contact a Governor in your constituency, please call 0808 100 3318 (Freephone) and leave a message stating who you wish to contact.

The Council of Governors comprises 25 Governors when all posts are filled, including 14 Public Governors across our constituencies of Bournemouth, Poole and Dorset/rest of England, as well as five Partner Governors and six Staff Governors.

Feel free to read the Register of Governors' Interests. You can also read the Governor Terms of Office.

Who can become a Governor – and how?

All Members of the Trust are eligible to stand in elections for the public seats on our Council of Governors, provided they live within the relevant constituency.

Elections are typically held when a Governor's term of office has ended. Elections are advertised on our website and are also promoted locally.

If you would like to stand as a Governor of Dorset HealthCare you must be a Member of the Trust. You can sign up to become a member using our Online Membership Form.


What do Governors do?

Governors represent the interests of Trust Members and influence how the Trust develops in the future. Our Governors have a diverse range of experiences and bring a breadth of knowledge to the Trust. The Council of Governors meets four times a year, and has additional informal meetings throughout the year.

The Council of Governors has a number of formal responsibilities. These include:

  • Appointing or removing the Trust Chair and Non-Executive Directors
  • Approving the appointment of the Chief Executive
  • Appointing or removing the Trust’s Auditors
  • Receiving the Annual Report, Quality Report and Annual Accounts.

Our Governors have many other key roles, including:

  • Promoting membership outside of the Trust
  • Establishing links with Members who they represent
  • Promoting awareness of the Trust's services
  • Working with the Board of Directors to develop the Trust's strategic direction
  • Promoting the importance of a positive patient experience
  • Assisting in studies, such as helping to seek local views or sitting on complaints panels
  • Reducing stigma through awareness raising
  • Linking with other organisations associated with the Trust

The Council of Governors at Dorset HealthCare University NHS Foundation Trust brings a diverse range of experience and breadth of knowledge to the Trust. There are a total of 24 Governors, including 14 Public Governors, 5 Staff Governors and 5 Governors from partner organisations

Governors meet four times a year, and at the Annual Members Meeting. These meetings are held in public and members of the Trust and of the public are encouraged to attend. Minutes and Agenda of these meetings are available on our website.

Get involved