Don’t risk patient care to cut costs, regulator warns foundation trusts

BMJ 2011; 343 doi: (Published 05 August 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;343:d5044
  1. Helen Mooney
  1. 1London

Foundation trusts in England are set to enter the “most challenging” financial times they have ever faced, with more than double the number of trusts forecasting financial problems this year than last year, the regulator of foundation trusts, Monitor, has warned.

Publishing its review of foundation trusts’ annual plans for 2011-12, Monitor highlighted the difficulties for foundation trusts in delivering year on year savings while also improving the quality of care and successfully integrating large numbers of “transforming community services” (TCS) transactions. Under the TCS transactions trusts are now moving outpatient services to community settings and paying alternative providers to carry out this work.

The review warns that cost improvement plans, which demand a 4.4% reduction in operating costs, are the “most …

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