£41million NHS shortfall for Welwyn Hatfield health group, study claims

PUBLISHED: 06:00 30 October 2013

The clinical commissioning group covering Welwyn Hatfield is underfunded by more than £41m a year, a study has suggested

The clinical commissioning group covering Welwyn Hatfield is underfunded by more than £41m a year, a study has suggested

Archant

A newly-formed health authority covering Welwyn Hatfield is facing a massive £41million less than its fair share of NHS cash, a new study has claimed.

A revised funding formula being considered by NHS England shows the East and North Hertfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is underfunded by more than 6.5 per cent.

The study, by the independent advisory committee on resource allocations (ACRA), says the authority should have received more than £629.7 million in the current financial year.

Instead, it was allocated £588.1 million – a 6.61 per cent shortfall.

The national figures, which emerged last week, revealed some CCGs were getting more than appeared fair – including Liverpool, which was claimed to be overpaid by £50million, and Cumbria, with £62million ‘too much’.

NHS chiefs will put forward proposals in December to decide whether to address the disparity.

The CCG’s finance director, Alan Pond, told the WHT: “We have challenges because the level of funding we receive is less than in other places.

“We’re already efficient and effective. We probably have much less scope than other places because of the position we’re in.

“It’s not a problem here and now, but because of the challenges we now face, it will become a problem.”

But he said it was unlikely health chiefs would address the full shortfall in one go.

Welwyn Hatfield MP Grant Shapps welcomed the study, and told the WHT: “The bottom line suggests that NHS East and North Hertfordshire is set to receive additional funding of around £70 per person and that would be a total annual increase per head from £1,035 to £1,108.

“This reflects that the fact that we have an ageing population in Hertfordshire which wasn’t accounted for fully using the previous allocation.”

A spokesman for NHS England, said funding changes would be decided in December.

He said: “We must get this right which is why we opened up a review on funding allocations to examine and consider a range of options and factors and engage with partners and local commissioners to agree the best possible way forward.”

And he added: “Discussions around what the proposals for funding allocations might be are ongoing.”


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