Simon Stevens has reminded the Government (and the voting public) of EU referendum claims that Brexit would deliver a further £350 million per week which could be spent on the NHS. This move appears to be part of a concerted (“collusional”?) campaign on the part of NHS leaders and think-tanks, to force the arm of the government on NHS spending commitments.
Triggle, N. (2017). We want our Brexit cash boost – NHS boss. London: BBC Health News, November 8th 2017.
Philip Hammond summarily dismissed the NHS chief’s demand for a £4 billion cash injection:
Pym, H. (2017). Will the Budget deliver for the NHS? London: BBC Health News, November 20th 2017.
A Collusion of the Great and the Good?
The British Medical Association (BMA) has warned that without extra investment more patients would wait longer than 4-hours for treatment in A&E; with a dramatic increase in the number of patients waiting on trolleys for treatment in hospitals or waiting longer at home for non-emergency elective procedures.
NHS pressures – future trends. [Online]: British Medical Association (BMA), October 30th 2017.
According to NHS Providers, rising patient demand for services continues to out-run the increasing numbers of NHS staff planned.
Triggle, N. (2017). NHS staff ‘working on edge of safety’. London: BBC Health News, November 7th 2017.
How is the NHS performing? November 2017 Quarterly Monitoring Report (King’s Fund)
The King’s Fund has duly weighed in. The November 2017 Quarterly Monitoring Report, similarly, indicates that NHS performance, as measured by several indicators, has declined.
“This should be a warning for the Chancellor as he prepares the Budget. Funding growth for the NHS is planned to slow to a near halt next year, so without additional funding waiting times for hospital treatment will get longer and the deterioration in patient care is set to continue”. Siva Anandaciva: The King’s Fund.
Patient care deteriorating as NHS heads into winter on a knife-edge. [Online]: King’s Fund, November 2017.
This relates to:
Quarterly Monitoring Report. QMR No.24. November 2017. London: King’s Fund, November 2017.
December 2017 Update:
Triggle, N. [and] Jeavans, C. (2017). Long A&E waits: 3m a year wait over four hours. London: BBC Health News, December 7th 2017.
November 2018 Update
NHS performance targets are being missed widely across the UK:
Triggle, N. [and] Jeavans, C. (2018). The hospitals that fail to treat patients on time. London: BBC Health News, November 20th 2018.
The King’s Fund, the Nuffield Trust and the Health Foundation, writing in concert, have suggested the extra funding required would be £4 billion next year.
Reminding people of broken promises can be a double-edged sword. Ministers might wonder what happened to previous plans, which were funded in good faith. In 2015 NHS England produced an account of how the NHS budget for the next five years would be allocated, including the additional £8.4 billion real terms NHS funding growth agreed by the Government.
NHS leaders set out new long-term approach for sustainability and transformation. [Online]: NHS England, December 22nd 2015.
NHS England allocates £560 billion of NHS funding to deliver NHS Five Year Forward View. [Online]: NHS England, December 17th 2015.
This related to:
Delivering the Forward View: NHS planning guidance 2016/17 – 2020/21. London: NHS England; NHS Improvement (Monitor and the NHS Trust Development Authority); Care Quality Commission (CQC); Health Education England (HEE); National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and Public Health England (PHE), December 22nd 2015.
National Audit Office (NAO) Perspective
“The NHS has received extra funding, but this has mostly been used to cope with current pressures and has not provided the stable platform intended from which to transform services”. Amyas Morse (2018): National Audit Office.
Therrien, A (2018). NHS bail-outs could become new normal, National Audit Office says. London: BBC Health News, January 18th 2018.
Dear old Boris had his say:
Boris Johnson rebuked over NHS cash plea. London: BBC Health News, January 23rd 2018.