I WRITE regarding the cost of the NHS reorganisation in Oxfordshire.
Two per cent of the annual NHS budget allocation for Oxfordshire over a period of two years is to be set aside for ‘non-recurrent expenditure’.
This amounts to about £35.5m, much of which will be spent on the ‘non-recurring’ top-down restructuring of the NHS caused by the Health and Social Care Bill none of us voted for. This is a staggering sum and is not directly related to patient care.
However, if the Bill produces significant savings that can be reinvested in patient care, it would make some sense.
The Government reassures us that this is the case. I’d like to find out for myself but am not having much luck, having so far contacted Lord Howe, the DHS, and the King’s Fund among others.
Is there anyone out there who could answer these two questions?
1. I have been told by Lord Howe that the implementation of the Health and Social Care Bill will “release up to £20bn over the next four years, all of which will be reinvested in patient care”. Where can I see the hard evidence for this?
2. In the Commons on Tuesday, January 10, Simon Burns said that the Bill would produce £4.5bn of savings over this parliament. Where can I see the hard evidence for this seemingly contradictory statement?
Most of us rely on the NHS – one of the most successful universal health-care systems in the world.
Why subject it to an expensive radical reorganisation when there is ‘no money left’? I urge your readers to ask how much this reorganisation is now costing, how much it will cost and to see the ‘books’ which provide hard evidence that there will be savings that benefit patients.
It’s our NHS, our money and we should be less passive about what happens to both.
VALERIE NORMAN, Margaret Road, Twyford, Adderbury