Comprehensive spending review is an opportunity to reset NHS finances

21 July 2020

Responding to the launch of the comprehensive spending review process, the deputy chief executive of NHS Providers, Saffron Cordery said:

“We welcome the launch of the comprehensive spending review process, which will set out the government’s multi-year spending plans.

“The NHS entered the pandemic under financial constraints particularly as demand continued to rise at a pace outstripping resources available.

“The government quickly made money available to help support trusts in their efforts to tackle COVID-19. This was greatly welcomed and has led to rapid innovation.

“However, our report Recovery position: What next for the NHS? set out the scale of increased demand and the dramatic loss of capacity many trusts are now facing as the NHS juggles treating COVID-19 patients with restarting the full range of services.

Trusts across all sectors – acute, ambulance, mental health and community – must be adequately resourced to meet the challenges ahead.

Saffron Cordery    Deputy Chief Executive

“Therefore trusts across all sectors – acute, ambulance, mental health and community – must be adequately resourced to meet the challenges ahead. Investment in social care and public health are also critical to creating a robust and sustainable NHS for the coming period. The pandemic has highlighted the impact of under-investment to date.

“Trusts must also receive proper capital funding to invest in urgent repairs and to upgrade facilities. In February, we found that 27% of mental health trusts funding allocated for capital investment would not even meet half of their current need, over and above the support for changes to dormitory wards.

For some time we have been calling on the government to fix the current system of capital investment within the NHS by setting a multi-year settlement which roughly doubles the current budget.

Saffron Cordery    Deputy Chief Executive

“For some time we have been calling on the government to fix the current system of capital investment within the NHS by setting a multi-year settlement which roughly doubles the current budget. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown that this must be prioritised, to ensure estates and resources are in keeping with what’s needed to efficiently look after people.

“The comprehensive spending review is an opportunity to reset the finances of the NHS, and the government must treat it as such.”

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