Doctors' pay is one reason for NHS debt

BMJ 2007; 334 doi: (Published 22 March 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;334:603
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. London

    A report by the government's spending watchdog has blamed poor financial management; lack of input from clinicians on financial matters; and underestimates by the Department of Health of the cost of doctors' recent pay awards for the NHS's current financial troubles.

    For its report, the House of Commons' Public Accounts Committee took evidence from the Department of Health on the cause of financial deficits in NHS organisations, their impact, and what steps were being taken to recover deficits.

    Errors in costing GPs' and consultants' contracts meant that, in 2005-6, individual NHS bodies were required to fund a £560m (€830m; $1.1bn) shortfall in resources to meet agreed pay awards.

    Edward Leigh MP, chairman of the committee, said that there was no one factor that had led to the cumulative deficit for all NHS trusts at the end of …

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