FINANCE: The south London acute trust King’s College Hospital Foundation Trust recorded a deficit of £1.28m in December, up from a £1m deficit in month 8.

The £583m-turnover organisation’s most recent finance report said it could face a £2.7m deficit by the end of 2011-12.

It said KCH intended to break even, but this would still see the trust £4.4m behind plan.

The report said: “The main risk factor in achieving this plan remains the ability of the trust to drive elective activity through in the final quarter. Emergency
activity in December and January has reduced this ability, but plans are in place to enable this activity to be contained and elective work increased.

“If this elective activity is not carried out, then it would have a significant impact on the trust’s ability to breakeven. However, the plan above assumes a prudent level of income in Q4, and as such, if this were to be exceeded, then performance would be better than outlined above.”

It added: “A number of key actions have been developed as part of a short term recovery plan to deliver this position; ranging from beds and main theatre/day surgery efficiencies; and strict financial controls to ensure only essential expenditure is incurred over last quarter.

“Access Initiative funding from NHS London will ease the cost pressures in the final quarter in respect to increasing activity throughput.”

The report said KCH used £10m of its Working Capital Facility in November to pay its creditors while “outstanding PCT Service Level Agreement over-performance debt [was] recovered”.

The trust has also called the district valuer in to review the impairment costs for the estate.

The report said GSTS Pathology owes the trust £2m and private patient and overseasc creditors owed the trust £30m.

It added: “The payment of Project Diamond funding (£2.7m), Emergency Re-admission funding (£2.2m) and Access Initiative funding (£4m) will be a significant benefit to the cash-flow in the final quarter.”