NHS Providers responds to £240m winter funding for NHS and social care
14 September 2023
Responding to the the Department of Health and Social Care's announcement of £200m of funding for the NHS and £40m for social care this winter, the director of policy and strategy at NHS Providers, Miriam Deakin said:
"Trusts are working incredibly hard ahead of what is expected to be another tough winter for the NHS, with industrial action, rising waiting lists and demand on emergency services expected to pile on the pressure.
"Today's announcement of £200m is of course welcome given the challenges the NHS faces, but urgent clarity is needed over whether this money is intended for specific initiatives or to offer general additional support to health services.
"Trust leaders tell us that the most pressing challenge facing the NHS this winter is now the real prospect of sustained industrial action. They will rightly ask questions about whether enough is being done to resolve wave after wave of highly disruptive strikes.
"These walkouts are acting as a drag on efforts to reduce record high waiting lists and undermining staff morale at a time when the service is dealing with over 125,000 vacancies.
"And with strikes estimated to have cost around £1bn so far and widespread disruption to patient care, it's clear more needs to be done to resolve these protracted disputes if we are to put the NHS on a sustainable footing this winter.
"The £40m for local authorities to boost social care capacity, reduce admissions and to tackle delayed discharges will similarly be welcomed but the government must also take a long, hard look at the fundamental long-term challenges facing social care rather than trying to get by through short-term quick fixes."