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A hospital trust is to slash up to 600 jobs – some of which will be IT and back office staff – as part of a £60m cost saving plan.

The Royal Berkshire Hospital Trust, which employs 4,500 people, was unable to provide a breakdown of job cuts in individual departments.

It said the axe will fall in human resources, IT, facilities and other roles away from the front line of its hospital operations.

The trust has an eye clinic in Windsor and a hospital in Reading and also farms out some of its services to a hospital in Newbury.

"Everyone is now well aware that we are working to achieve our aim in a challenging financial situation which is facing the whole country and in particular the public sector," said the trust’s chief medical officer, Dr Jonathan Fielden.

"This year we have to identify and deliver a savings plan of £20 million (around 6.5 per cent of our total budget), and over three years need to save a total of £60 million.”

It plans to lay off around 200 staff by the end of 2010, and expects a total of 500 to 600 jobs to be shed at the trust over the next three years.

The Register asked the trust if it could confirm how many of its IT staff would lose their jobs in the cull. However, it was unable to provide us with a detailed breakdown of individual departments affected by the cuts. ®

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