• Two acute trusts in Derbyshire were £24m behind their control total plans by December
  • Partners in Derbyshire group said savings target likely to be even higher next year

Two acute trusts in Derbyshire have fallen £24m behind their financial “control totals” and admitted they will miss their year-end plans.

A recent meeting of the county’s sustainability and transformation partnership, was told University Hospitals of Derby and Burton Foundation Trust and Chesterfield Royal Hospital FT would be changing their year-end forecasts.

In the year to December, UHDB reported a control total deficit of £33m, which was £14m worse than planned. This was despite the benefit of an unspecified non-recurrent item worth £8m.

The trust pointed to increased non-elective activity and its impact on surgical lists. It is among the most challenged in the country for accident and emergency waiting times.

Chief executive Gavin Boyle said: “We’ve always made a commitment to put patient care first. However, we take our financial responsibilities seriously and are trying to improve our financial position by working with our regulators and partners to ensure we work as efficiently as possible.”

The trust also missed its control total by around £30m in 2018-19, after the accounting treatment of a major asset sale went against them.

CRH reported a control total deficit of £8m in the year to December, which was around £10m worse than planned. Control total performance excludes the benefit of provider sustainability funding and other central funds.

The STP also reported that, towards the end of 2019, £100 million worth of savings were forecast across its partners by the year end. However, another £48m would be needed to deliver year-end financial balance.

Because of this, the STP said it was likely it would have to recalculate its year-end savings plan for 2020-21. In its long-term plan the partnership had originally said savings of £127 million were necessary.

A report by Lee Outhwaite, the STP’s finance lead and Chesterfield Royal’s director of finance, stated: “The identified level of system savings for 20-21 assumed the delivery of the 19-20 plan. If we deliver the £150m savings in 19/20 plans, our savings requirement in 20-21 would be of the order of £127m. Given the shortfall in the £150m and other potential variables the actual saving requirement for 20-21 is likely to be significantly greater than £127m.”

Several of the largest NHS trusts have already indicated to NHS England and NHS Improvement they would miss their year-end control totals. Midway through the year, the provider sector as a whole was £130 million overspent against its combined plan.