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Never ending winter

A trust with one of the worst performing A&E departments in the country is planning to keep its extra winter capacity open until the summer.

University Hospitals of North Midlands has confirmed the beds at Bradwell Community Hospital will remain open until at least June.

The trust opened 120 beds in December in response to “severe winter pressures”, chief executive Paula Clark said. The trust has also asked NHS Improvement for approval to permanently open 70 additional beds.

NHS England data showed that in December and January, the trust was in the top 10 worst performers in the country on the four hour target for both type one and all other admissions.

North Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent CCGs confirmed the trust will use money allocated under the winter pressures fund to pay for the beds.

Ms Clark said: “UHNM regularly has up to 200 patients who are medically fit waiting to be discharged from our hospitals, very high demand within our accident and emergency departments, and lengthy waits for beds.

“The wards at Bradwell Community Hospital were temporarily opened in December 2017 as a response to severe winter pressures, and commissioners have agreed that these can remain open until June 2018.”

Christie bonus

A specialist trust is set to receive a £27m bonus payment from regulators after a one-off insurance claim boosted its forecast surplus for the year.

The Christie Foundation Trust is now predicting a surplus of £64m for 2017-18, which includes the benefit a forecast insurance settlement and £27m of extra money from the sustainability and transformation fund.

The insurance claim relates to a serious fire at the trust in April 2017, which caused major damage to a research facility. The trust said the claim has not yet been settled.

Under rules set by NHS England and NHS Improvement, trusts that can better their “control total” financial target for the year receive additional payments from the STF above their original allocation.

The extra payments come from money originally allocated to other trusts but that has been withheld because they did not agree a control total or failed to meet their target.

The Christie, a specialist cancer trust in Greater Manchester, had planned a surplus of £10m at the start of the year. Its new forecast for a year-end surplus of £64m suggests the insurance claim totals around £27m, which would then trigger £27m of extra STF.