As rumour and speculation over cuts continues, the Financial Times reported that health secretary Andrew Lansley’s proposals for wholesale structural change within the NHS had hit a snag when seen by the committee that resolves intra-coalition government disagreements.

It said coalition members, of unnamed parties, were uncomfortable with the proposed scale of change, potentially delaying the date for publication of the NHS white paper, which had been due on 12 July.

Money remains at the root of almost all health stories, including the Daily Express’s report that 300 senior NHS managers earn more than the prime minister - headline writers’ shorthand for “a lot”. More than 50 more than NHS executives are paid over £200,000, while David Cameron’s salary is £142,500.

The Telegraph also reported that “turnaround” management consultants were expected to hike their rates to reflect their position at the centre of the cuts industry.

It quoted Interim Partners managing director Doug Baird, who said interest from NHS trusts and other public sector bodies in his firm’s services had risen five-fold since this time last year.

He said “efficiency experts just below board level” presently charged £1,000 a day, but he expected that to rise once details of departmental savings were published.

The Sunday Telegraph used its leader column to lambast the “folly” of excluding the NHS from the coalition government’s huge savings package.

It claimed that “every serious investigation” into the health service found it operated with “a huge amount of waste and inefficiency”, and the paper insisted it must not remain one of just two government departments to be spared the Treasury’s axe.

“There is no economic case for leaving it alone,” it said.