FINANCE: NHS London directors confirmed at a board meeting the reserves allocated to the Challenged Trust Board for 2011-12 were £95.3m, while acute trusts have debts of more than £424m.

The CTB was set up to help trusts clear historic debts, but last year had to help PCTs that ran into serious deficit, mostly through the overperformance of their providers.

Directors today confirmed the fund had £95.3m to spend this financial year with the north west London cluster holding another £52m.

South London Healthcare Trust alone owed £223m at the end of 2010-11.

The north west London sector holds enough in its own CTB to cover the debts of North West London Hositals Trust (£29m) and West Middlesex University Hospital (£22m).

Other trusts throughout London have significant debts to local commissioners, the cluster, SHA or the Department of Health.

Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust owes £150m while Whipps Cross owes the DH £38m and the CTB £24m.