NHS National News April 2015
- The newly agreed “Enhanced Tariff Option” for 2015-16 increases payment for emergency hospital admissions beyond the agreed threshold, from 30% to 70% and the marginal rate for specialised services from 50% to 70%, as well as lowering efficiency requirements by 0.3%.
- Despite this revised tariff, many hospitals will find it difficult to set a balanced budget for 2015/16.
b. Monitor’s review of Foundation Trusts: In the third quarter of 2014-15 the Foundation Trust sector failed to meet Accident & Emergency targets, cancer waiting times and other targets. Patients attending FT A&Es rose by 8% versus last year and bed occupancy rates were up 2%. The aggregate deficit of FTs is £321m, five times higher than planned. Smaller acute FTs remain the most financially challenged - 78% of small and medium acute FTs are in deficit, with overspends on agency staff.
c, Challenging of CQC reports: (Health Service Journal 27 March 2015) There is wide variation in the number of factual accuracy challenges to Care Quality Commission inspection reports, topped by 500 challenges from East Kent Hospital University FT which led to changes to 9 of its CQC ratings. London North West Healthcare NHS FT, which includes Northwick Park Hospital, challenged two ratings with no success.
d. March budget 2015 - more mental health support: (Healthwatch Harrow e-bulletin March 2015) The budget includes, over five years, £15m for perinatal mental health services and £235m for children and young people’s mental health services.
e. Victory in campaign to cancel diabetic fines: The Government has agreed to reimburse diabetics who have been unfairly fined for not having a valid medical exemption certificate. Poor communication led many diabetics without a certificate to claim free prescriptions for years without any problems, but since September 2014 thousands were suddenly fined up to £100!
f. Health Service Journal names the top NHS Chief Executives: (HSJ 27 March 2015) In its second annual list the HSJ judges rated Clair Murdoch, Chief Executive of Central & North West London FT, in the top 15! She was quoted as ” … an incredibly influential system leader who looks beyond her own organisation”. Bob Bell of Royal Brompton & Harefield FT was listed amongst the top fifty CEOs, as was Cally Palmer, CEO of the Royal Marsden FT.