NHS over­spend tops £2M

The Oban Times - - News - LOUISE GLEN lglen@oban­times.co.uk

NHS High­land over­spent its rev­enue bud­gets by £2 mil­lion in the first quar­ter of this fi­nan­cial year.

In a re­port to the board, fi­nance di­rec­tor, Nick Ken­ton warned that, based on this trend, there is a risk that the board will miss its end- of-year tar­get of break­ing even by around £ 5 mil­lion.

How­ever, Mr Ken­ton feels that a break- even point can be achieved ‘sub­ject to de­liv­ery of cash-re­leas­ing ben­e­fits from sav­ings plans and trans­for­ma­tional projects’.

As an ex­am­ple of cost pres­sures, the di­rec­tor’s re­port fore­casts an over­spend of £ 5.1 mil­lion on med­i­cal and den­tal staff.

By the end of the first quar­ter, ex­pen­di­ture on med­i­cal locums had reached a sub­stan­tial £ 3.3 mil­lion.

Mr Ken­ton will ask the board to re­duce the use of locums, which he ar­gues will have a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact in re­duc­ing the forecast over­spend.

The fi­nance di­rec­tor said in his re­port: ‘ Work is on­go­ing to look at the ar­range­ments with locum agen­cies with a view to ob­tain­ing a bet­ter price for locums pro­vided.’

He added that work to man­age the de­mand for locums is be­ing car­ried out on an on­go­ing ba­sis.

Mr Ken­ton also ex­plained that wait­ing list ini­tia­tives re­quired for meet­ing treat­ment time guar- an­tees rep­re­sented an ad­di­tional cost pres­sure for Raig­more hos­pi­tal in In­ver­ness.

These, he said, would need to be man­aged ei­ther in the hos­pi­tal or across the whole NHS High­land re­gion.

Mr Ken­ton’s re­port showed that the board had un­der­spent its cap­i­tal bud­gets for the pe­riod from April to June of this year.

He con­cluded that the board is on course to break­ing even on cap­i­tal ex­pen­di­ture by the end of the fi­nan­cial year.

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