FINANCE: The outer north east London cluster of primary care trusts could save money on bariatric surgery with better community services for obesity.

The joint panel for Individual Funding Requests must approve procedures on the cluster’s proscribed list before they can proceed.

The panel reported the obesity finding to the board in July and said: “the current volume of requests are considerably higher than contracted for.”

The panel has met fortnightly since its inception on 1 April.

It added that “temporary administrative support” had been brought in to speed up applications.