• United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust in financial special measures after forecasting a deficit of £75m
  • Trust was placed in quality special measures earlier this year
  • Deputy chief says trust faces “one of the biggest financial challenges in the NHS”

A trust facing a deficit of £75.2m has appointed external consultants as it faces what its deputy chief executive called “one of the biggest financial challenges in the NHS”.

United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust is in financial special measures after its forecast deficit soared beyond its control total of a £48.6m deficit.

The trust is now in both quality and financial special measures and has appointed KPMG to work with it for 10 weeks to identify “immediate savings” and work on a financial recovery plan.

NHS Improvement will appoint a financial improvement director to monitor and oversee the plan.

The trust told its board this month it was now forecasting a £75.2m deficit, assuming delivery of £18.2m in efficiency savings, with the trust requiring external cash support.

Board papers said: “The trust will not deliver its control deficit of £48.6m and a financial recovery plan that was submitted to NHSI identified a most likely deficit of £75.2m.

“The deterioration in the income and expenditure position directly impacts on cash and the level of borrowings needed in 2017-18. The trust will require external cash support in line with the forecast outturn in 2017-18.”

Deputy chief executive Kevin Turner said: “The first quarter results show the extent of the financial challenge facing the NHS at the moment.

“However, our own financial position has deteriorated this year, compared with last, to a point that we face one of the biggest financial challenges in the NHS.

“We therefore welcome the additional support from NHSI to help us to tackle our deficit and move towards a sustainable position for our services.”

The trust, which is also in the process of recruiting a new chair, said it realised its services could be more efficient.

Mr Turner said work was underway on a financial recovery plan and KPMG would work with the trust to identify immediate savings and plan for the future.

“NHS Improvement will now appoint a director to support us to develop our plan and this will enhance the work already started with our external partners,” he added.