What support will the trusts receive?
Each trust will receive a package of support designed to achieve rapid financial improvement, while maintaining or improving their quality. They will also agree a recovery plan with us and get support from – and are held accountable by – a Financial Improvement Director. These are highly experienced NHS leaders or experts in supporting financial improvement in major organisations.
Two trusts that were in the first group to enter financial special measures last year have already improved enough to exit the programme.
The trusts that will be joining the seven currently in financial special measures are:
- St George’s University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
- North Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust
- University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust
These trusts haven’t kept up with their agreed control totals and are forecasting a combined deficit of £145 million.
We know patient demand is high and that these are difficult times for the NHS, which is why it is even more important that NHS trusts keep a strong grip on their finances. We know that trusts meeting their financial plans also provide better quality services to patients.
Financial special measures has already saved the NHS around £100 million in 2016/17. The three trusts being put into financial special measures are not on course to meet their savings targets and financial special measures will be an effective way of supporting them to significantly improve.
Jim Mackey, Chief Executive, NHS Improvement
Trusts previously put into financial special measures have received support across a range of areas including:
- ensuring that their financial systems and controls operate effectively, so that money isn’t being spent without proper checks and controls – including, for example, in the authorisation of agency and locum spend
- improving efficiency and productivity, including learning lessons from higher performing trusts
- improving the way trusts manage their workforce and plan rotas to use their permanent staff most effectively – we have seen major reductions in temporary staff spend in this way
- ensuring they get paid appropriately for the work they do