Friday, 9 January 2015

Funding healthcare: making allocations to local areas report

Funding healthcare: making allocations to local areas report The slow progress towards target funding allocations means the Government has not fulfilled its policy objective of equal access for equal need.

In 2014-15, nearly two-fifths of clinical commissioning groups and over three-quarters of local authorities remain more than 5 percentage points above or below their target funding allocations. Funding for clinical commissioning groups varies from £137 per person below target to £361 per person above target. This has important implications for the financial sustainability of the health service as underfunded clinical commissioning groups are more likely to be in financial deficit: 19 of the 20 groups with the tightest financial positions at 31 March 2014 had received less than their target funding allocation.

The Department and NHS England explained that there are trade-offs between moving commissioners more quickly towards their target funding allocations and safeguarding the stability of local health economies, and that making quicker progress would involve real-terms reductions in funding for some areas. However, the National Audit Office calculated that, if the slow pace of change were to continue, it would take around 80 years for all local commissioners to get close to their target funding allocations. NHS England said that it wanted to make faster progress and that it aimed to move all clinical commissioning groups to within 5 percentage points of their target allocations within around two years. For public health allocations to local authorities, the Department said that decisions, including the pace of change, were a matter for the government of the day. Public Accounts Select Committee

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