STRENGTH IN NUMBERS

Strength in Numbers dedicated to my late mother Kay

Raid on health department funds to pay for frontline NHS services by Sarah Neville, Public Policy Editor – ft.com

 

As negotiations continued this week over the settlement for health, government insiders argued that the “ring fence”, which ensures spending on the health service rises at least at the rate of inflation, applied to the NHS but not to other areas of health department spending. The move raises the prospect of cuts to areas of expenditure such as public health, nurses’ and doctors’ education and capital for maintaining and expanding NHS infrastructure. However, it would allow George Osborne to argue that he was putting money into frontline services as he implements a promise to give the service an additional £8bn a year by 2020.

Total department of health spending in England in 2014-15 stood at £113bn, compared with the NHS England budget of £98bn. That leaves £15bn outside the ring fence: £11bn of revenue funding, with public health and clinical training consuming the lion’s share; and £4bn of capital. This unprotected expenditure could be put into frontline services run by NHS England.

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Raid on health department funds to pay for frontline NHS services

 

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Funds for areas such as public health and nurses’ training look set to be raided for money to pour into frontline NHS services in next week’s spending review.

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