Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust’s forecast deficit for the end of the financial year is more than double its planned amount.
Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust is forecasting to record more than double its planned deficit this financial year, and expecting another huge shortfall in 2014-15.
In November the trust predicted it could meet its planned deficit of £17.7m despite “significant risks”. However, its forecast deficit reported this month is £38m.
The trust has grappled with financial problems, and care quality problems, for several years, and was placed in regulatory special measures in December.
In a March board paper interim finance director Rob Cooper writes: “At month 9 the Trust has re-assessed the likely outturn position, including risks and mitigation and revised the forecast deficit to £38m although the underlying position may be as much as £40m.”
A trust spokeswoman confirmed the forecast deficit was £38m. The trust is also forecasting a large deficit for 2014-15, of £37m.
The spokeswoman said the increased deficit was “primarily caused by slippage in delivering savings under the trust’s cost improvement programme”.
She added that unplanned costs had also contributed to the build-up “for example, invoices from NHS [Property Company] for trust occupancy of community based healthcare facilities and the cost of external support to help the trust develop its operating plan & [cost improvement plan] for 2014-15.”
The trust was placed in special measures in December after a Care Quality Commission inspection found evidence of “unsafe care” in its accident and emergency departments.
HSJ last week revealed controversy around the decision, with leaked emails revealing its former chair Sir Peter Dixon quit over the issue.
Its chief executive Averil Dongworth also announced her retirement at the end of last year, and had been due to leave the organisation.
The spokeswoman said interviews were underway to appoint a new chief executive. She added: “We are anticipating that the new CEO (when appointed) will start work at the trust prior to Averil leaving, to enable a handover to take place.”