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NHS spending slows

10th October 2007

Spending on the NHS in England will slow over the next three years with the growth rate at 4% a year over inflation.

Pound Sign

Between now and 2010, the annual NHS budget will rise from £90billion to £110billion.

The announcement was made by Chancellor Alistair Darling who also revealed that the cash would fund 20 new hospitals, 140 new walk-in centres open seven days a week and 100 new GP practices.

But overall it sees a slow down in NHS spending with the NHS having benefited from yearly rises of over 7% after inflation since 2002.

Reaction to the announcement came from a number of directions with the independent think tank the King’s Fund saying the onus was now firmly on the NHS to improve productivity but felt the figure would not damage patient care.

Chief executive Niall Dickson said: “Reducing the annual real growth from what it has been over the last seven years will feel like a cut. However, in a fiscally tight spending review, the NHS has done well compared with other departments.?

The British Medical Association said it was vital funds were not squandered on costly deals with the private sector while the NHS Confederation view was that the NHS was now well placed to face a challenging financial future and continue to improve the service for patients.

Health workers’ union Unison, said the additional funds would help see through health modernisation plans and prevent a return to the financial deficits that have restricted development in many health trusts.

 

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