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PFI deals need more scrutiny after shareholders receive big windfalls

BMJ 2005; 330 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.330.7505.1407-a (Published 16 June 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;330:1407
  1. Matthew Limb
  1. London

    The National Audit Office has asked for a scrutiny of hospital deals secured under the private finance initiative (PFI) to see whether newer schemes are delivering better value for money than earlier ones as the PFI market matures. The review was suggested after an investigation by the office into the refinancing of an early PFI scheme, which gave private shareholders an £81m ($45m; €67m) windfall. The trust involved in the scheme, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital NHS Trust, also benefited from the refinancing, but the office warned that it now faces increased risks and continues to “pay a premium” compared with more recent PFI deals with better terms.

    The office reviewed the PFI deal after concerns were raised by the MP for North Norfolk, Norman Lamb (Liberal Democrat). It concluded that ministers …

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