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Welfare Reform on the Web (June 2010): National Health Service - funding

The axe must swing on jobs and pay

A. Maynard

Health Service Journal, Apr. 22nd 2010, p. 13-14

Productivity can be increased within a static budget by improving outcomes with fewer staff and by cutting the price of staff. In order to improve productivity in the NHS, any new government will need to radically reform pay and pensions policy and cut the real wages of top earners. The alternative to pay and pensions controls is redundancy and/or delegating tasks to cheaper, less qualified staff.

Confed 'misled' over failed scheme

C. Santry

Health Service Journal, May 13th 2010, p. 11

A confidential review of NHS Employers' ambitious scheme to run human resources services on behalf of trusts reveals that trustees at the NHS Confederation, Employers' umbrella organisation, were presented with misleading information about the project. The scheme collapsed in March 2010 with 3.4m losses.

(See also Health Service Journal, May 20th 2010, p. 9)

DH tabled financial aid for 'controllable' NHS Employers

C. Santry

Health Service Journal, May 6th 2010, p. 4-5

Leaked documents show that the Department of Health was prepared to give NHS Employers up to 1.6m compensation for not bidding to run the NHS Jobs website. The Department feared a conflict of interest if NHS Employers bid for the NHS Jobs tender while continuing to receive 18m a year for representing it in employment negotiations. NHS Employers' inability to offer NHS Jobs as part of its membership model, which was to provide human resources to trusts, preceded the collapse of the project with 3.4m losses.

Funding favours GPs in richest areas

S. Gainsbury

Health Service Journal, Apr. 8th 2010, p. 4-5

At present practice-based commissioning budgets are merely 'indicative' and optional. The Department of Health has adopted a new formula for determining these notional target commissioning budgets for each GP practice. Instead of using proxy indicators of need such as population age and deprivation level, the new formula uses actual patient diagnosis data at practice level. As a result of the new formula, GPs in the richest areas will be granted a 1.2% increase in their target commission budget in 2010.

NHS may need to make more than 20bn cuts, warns Lansley

The new health secretary, Andrew Lansley, has signalled that the NHS may need to make more savings than the previously announced 20bn in efficiency cuts, a move that health experts described as 'extremely ambitious' and unions warned could have a 'devastating effect' on hospitals.

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