WORKFORCE: The Southampton, Hampshire, Isle of Wight and Portsmouth primary care trust cluster was overspent on staff costs by £385,000 at month nine.

The cluster’s workforce report for January said: “The additional workforce costs are across a range of areas, flexible staffing has been used in various areas across SHIP; due to restructure process, achieving financial saving targets, filling skills gaps and covering vacancies being held.

“Some of the flexible staff that have been used have been high end cost, with low usage; when filling these posts with substantive staff, will be at a lower band. We are currently working with IoW to produce robust workforce cost information against plan.”

The cluster’s workforce has been under plan since April. “The current position is under plan by 36.1 FTE,” the papers say. “Flexible staffing is currently 61.3 full time equivalent as at December 2011; however, recruitment is now beginning to increase for vacant posts following the end of the restructure process.”

Sickness absence across the cluster in November 2011, was 3.5 per cent against a target of 3 per cent. However in Portsmouth the figure was 4.9 per cent.