The British Medical Association has questioned how the NHS in England has achieved a £983m surplus for the end of the financial year.

BMA chair Dr Hamish Meldrum said: 'I believe it is a huge tribute to the staff who have worked extremely hard to reach this point.

'However, you have to look at what trusts have done to get out of the red. At the end of last year we saw services to patients being cut, with operations delayed, outpatient clinics cancelled, and referral management schemes – which were really only thinly disguised forms of rationing.'