FINANCE: The primary care trust’s latest finance report shows that at the end of February it was on course for a surplus of £7.3m, around £2m more than planned.

The report covering the 10 months ending 28 February shows an improvement in the year to date surplus of £1.6m, compared to the planned surplus of £3.1m.

It said: “This position has been achieved by the release of a further £1m of reserves in the month. Earmarked reserves and contingency had already been released in previous periods, but the return of the regional transformation funds last month has allowed elements of these funds to be released this month.”

As a result the PCT has forecast beating its planned overall year-end surplus of £5.352m by £2m.

The report noted the most significant movement in expenditure in February was an increase in the areas of continuing healthcare and learning disability areas, and the worsening of its prescribing position.

It added: “There still remains further uncovered risks totalling £835,000 not included in the above position. ESCHS [East Sussex Community Health Services] may not be able to breakeven in the current financial year.”

“The PCT may therefore have to cover its share of the potential overspend which has been assumed to be £400,000. Detailed work is currently being undertaken in provider services to close down all year end risks. The PCT still expects to achieve its forecast surplus.”