Health matters: health economics – making the most of your budget| Public Health England
All local authorities and local public health teams are under budget pressures and are facing increasingly challenging decisions over what services to invest in and disinvest from. This edition of Health Matters focuses on local authorities, NHS commissioners and healthcare providers making better evidence-based commissioning decisions, and getting the most from their budget using easy to use health economic tools, resources and core principles.
The King’s Fund | July 2018 | The NHS 10-year plan: how much will be spent on NHS deficits?
NHS providers racked up a deficit of just under £1 billion in 2017/18. How much of the Prime Minister’s 3.4 per cent real-terms growth a year will go into removing these deficits? Not a lot is probably the answer. (Source: The King’s Fund)
HFMA & PwC | June 2018 | Making money work in the health and social care system
PwC have worked closely with the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA), to explore what those working in both policy and practice
across the health sector think about the current mechanisms.
They have used their findings, and experience, to propose a number of
recommendations which they believe would facilitate the move towards place based care and support the ambitions of the Five Year Forward View.
These recommendations are particularly timely as indications are that an
announcement of a well needed, long term funding settlement for the NHS is imminent. The need for additional funds is widely recognised. The recommendations in their report would enable this funding to be put to best use for patients (Source: HFMA & PwC).
The King’s Fund| March 2018 | How is the NHS performing? March 2018 quarterly monitoring report
The King’s Fund has released its quarterly monitoring report (QMR) of NHS performance. Its analysis finds increased numbers of patients are facing long waits for hospital treatment, with those experiencing the longest delay often most in need of treatment. As demand for services is continuing to rise, the think tank finds it unlikely that meeting waiting time targets will become more achievable, with implications for how the NHS protects patients waiting the longest (The King’s Fund).
Since the last QMR there has been a Budget, new planning guidance for 2018/19 and most (but not all) of winter. The King’s Fund considers the impact of these factors together with their latest survey data sources to discuss the current position and forecast for finance and performance.
The NHS is facing one of the most challenging periods in its history, with a funding gap of more than £22 billion over the coming years. And the pressure on the social care system is more acute than ever, with many councils raising eligibility thresholds and making cuts to social care budgets.
Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) – which are local health and care reform plans, authored jointly by NHS and local government leaders to improve outcomes and drive greater efficiency in their local area – are one of the government’s main responses to this problem. These plans rightly focus on decentralising power within the NHS, investing in leadership and relationships to drive improvements, and on local health and care organisations coming together to overcome the silos created by the 2012 Health and Care Act.
This report looks at the most promising reform solutions that have been identified by STPs, and also sets out the range of challenges that stand in the way of them realising their vision for improved health and efficiency.
CCG budgets tightening under rapidly increasing pressures, NHSCC warns
NHS Clinical Commissioners have launched an infographic The shrinking value of the commissioning pound. It highlights how rising inflation, along with a growing population, means that while on paper the funds allocated to CCGs are going up, in reality the value of the CCG pound is shrinking.
This latest quarterly monitoring report from The Kings Fund finds that NHS is now planning to delay or cancel spending in half of local areas this year to meet financial targets. The survey of NHS trust finance directors suggests that NHS finances have improved over the last quarter of 2016/17 but whilst progress has been made in reducing agency spending, the underlying financial position remains a source of concern with many trusts having relied on one-off actions to improve their financial position.
The 2017/18 financial year looks set to be another difficult one for the NHS. While trust finance directors are more optimistic than at this time last year, 43 per cent of them expect to overspend their budget and a similar proportion (46 per cent) are concerned about meeting financial targets. This lack of confidence extends to the commissioning sector, with only one in five CCG finance leads confident they can achieve financial balance this year.