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Home Industry News NAO report highlights unsustainable approach to NHS funding

NAO report highlights unsustainable approach to NHS funding

26th July 2016

The National Audit Office (NAO) has raised concerns about the unsustainability of the government's current approach to funding the NHS.

Having reviewed the accounts of the Department of Health, NHS England and the consolidated accounts of the NHS foundation trusts, the NAO found that the department kept within its budget for 2015-16, but by a "wafer-thin" margin".

Local NHS trusts ended the year with a combined deficit of 2.45 billion pounds; while NHS England had an underspend of 599 million pounds, the major contributions to this were shown to be either non-recurrent or adjusted for in budget-setting for 2016-17.

Even with additional resources committed for the next year, early forecasts are showing a year-end deficit of 500 million pounds in the provider sector.

Amyas Morse, head of the National Audit Office, said: "The department and its partners need to create and implement a robust, credible and comprehensive plan to move the NHS to a more sustainable financial footing."

The British Medical Association has criticised the government over the findings, saying they show that "short-term fixes and clever accounting tricks" are being used to mask broader deficiencies in healthcare investment.ADNFCR-8000103-ID-801822517-ADNFCR

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