STPs are making plans ‘they do not believe can be delivered’

Health economy leaders are being forced to draw up sustainability plans which they do not believe can be delivered, according to the national body that represents NHS trusts.

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, told the Commons health committee that financial requirements placed on “sustainability and transformation plans” are leading to “vastly over-ambitious” proposals.

STPs are currently being drawn up in 44 patches covering England, many having to deal with huge financial deficits over the next five years, and severely constrained funding growth under the comprehensive spending review settlement announced last November.

Mr Hopson told the committee that the “financial gap” in many STPs totals “hundreds of millions of pounds”, and added: “They are now looking at a set of figures that to be frank just look completely undeliverable.

“Our members very clearly asked the question in June and July, ‘Do you want a plan, any plan, that balances to that very reduced figure or do you want us to tell you how far we can get?’

Full story in the HSJ 11 October 2016