Independent experts have warned that the NHS is heading into an unprecedented financial crisis and will overspend its budget by at least £7bn next year as the effects of inflation and strikes plunge hospital trusts into alarming levels of debt.
The problem of soaring deficits is hitting a growing number of trusts across England and will raise further serious doubts about Rishi Sunak’s chances of meeting his pledge to cut record waiting lists.
In a sign of the extreme pressures, the Manchester Integrated Care System, bringing together trusts and other healthcare providers in Greater Manchester, has brought in Stephen Hay, a troubleshooter from PricewaterhouseCoopers who formerly worked in the NHS, to help sort out its disastrous financial position. According to the Health Service Journal, NHS Greater Manchester has reported a deficit of £125m after the first four months of 2023-24, more than £100m worse than planned.
Full article in The Guardian, 17 September 2023