Dr Blogs

Extra STP funding: “NHS no choice but to spend funds for service reform on deficits”

Niall Dickson, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said:

“The NAO has added to a long line of reports lamenting the state of health and care.

“We have passed the point in which politicians needed to be honest with the public about what faces us now and what will face us in the future.

“There is an urgent need to deal with the short-term crisis in the system but also to address the challenge we face over the next decade.

“That is why we are working with the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) and the Health Foundation – to conduct a comprehensive study into the funding needs of the UK’s health and care systems.

“We hope this will lead to a more informed debate among politicians and the wider public about what is needed.”

Nuffield Trust Senior Policy Analyst Sally Gainsbury, said:

“As this report makes clear, the NHS is in a dire financial position. For several years hospital trusts have been grappling with the twin pressures of rising prices and significant cuts to the amount of money they receive per patient. This has meant they are relying increasingly on one-off savings and bailouts to balance the books, leading to a significant underlying deficit – something we have consistently highlighted.

“This has left hospital trusts with no choice but to spend the money earmarked for reforming services – the Sustainability and Transformation Fund – on dealing with their yawning deficit. But the NHS cannot go on like this. The NAO is absolutely right that we need greater clarity on how large the underlying deficit really is – and their recommendation that this be published annually is very welcome.

“Longer term, this report adds further evidence – if it were needed – that the NHS is in desperate need of more money. Unless politicians can grasp the nettle and put it on a more sustainable footing, hospitals will sink deeper and deeper into the red, adding to the already very concerning situation facing patients and staff alike.”

Dr Chaand Nagpaul, BMA council chair, said:

“This report provides clear evidence that investment designed to help the NHS transform and improve patient services is instead being used to firefight and meet existing pressures and deficits.

“With pressure on NHS services intensifying year on year, we agree with the report’s findings that the short-term funding is not meeting patients’ needs. We urgently need politicians of all parties need to come together to agree a long-term, sustainable funding plan for the NHS.”

Bookmark and Share

Post a Comment

Enter this security code

Submit Comment for Moderation