The Department of Health (DH) has announced that the NHS is on course for a £1.8 billion surplus. This surplus is about two percent of the overall NHS budget, and is a dramatic improvement on the 2005/2006 period.
Two years ago the NHS found itself with a £547m deficit. According to the Quarter 3 report for 2007/08, this year just seventeen trusts are forecasting deficits, compared to 25 at Quarter 2, and 82 in 2006/07.
The new report also highlights an improvement of £58 million on the forecast gross deficit of £201 million at Quarter 2.
Director General for NHS Finance, Performance and Operations, David Flory says that delivering a surplus is “essential for creating the capacity for investment in future years”. However, the UK press are highlighting cuts in patient care and an average wait of 49 days, up from 41 days in 1997-1998.