Are providers spending within budgets?
Some NHS providers that claimed to be on track with their financial plans midway through 2016/17 are now predicting significant declines.
Several trusts (including King’s College Hospital, Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Partnership and University Hospitals North Midlands) have revised their year-end forecasts by up to £20m
Analysis by the Health Service Journal reveals that a forecasting protocol, introduced by the NHS Improvement regulator in October, caused some confusion. Some elements of the sustainability and transformation fund (STF) appear to have been double-counted due to planned appeals against missed payments.
Some trusts that had revised their mid-year forecast were required to complete additional assurance stages before NHS Improvement would accept their new forecast, which was not possible in time for the regulator’s mid-year report.
NHS Improvement had forecast at the end of September a year-end deficit of £670m, which includes the £1.8bn STF. The planned deficit for the year is £580m.