• Trust and Foundation Trust compulsory redundancy spend rises to £46.7m
  • Mental health trust spends £4.9m in one year
  • Midlands Partnership FT paid one member of staff £354,000, analysis reveals

Trust spend on compulsory redundancies increased by 8 per cent — or £3.3m — last year, analysis reveals.

Data from trust annual accounts shows NHS providers spent £46.7m on severance payments in 2017-18, up from £43.4m the year before.

One mental health trust — Essex Partnership University FT — paid out £4.9m for redundancy payments in 2017-18, the equivalent of 1.4 per cent of its annual budget. 

The trust was created from a merger of North Essex Partnership FT and South Essex Partnership FT in 2017.

Three people were each paid between £150,000 and £200,000, eight were paid between £100,000 and £150,000 each, and 24 were paid between £50,000 and £100,000 each. Smaller sums accounted for the remainder of the £4.9m. 

The trust sector made only two payouts of more than £200,000 in 2017-18, the annual accounts revealed.

Essex Partnership University FT’s finance director Mark Madden said in a statement: “The redundancy cost for the period 2016-2018 was due to the merger.

“We undertook a large scale restructure and redundancy programme of corporate functions and senior management clinical structures. Redundancy payments are based on contractual obligations that the trust has to fulfil.

“As a result of these redundancies, we make a substantial annual recurrent saving of £5m which we are able to put back into services.”

Midlands Partnership FT paid one member of staff £354,000 after a compulsory redundancy, while St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospital Trust paid one member of staff £231,000.

A spokesman for Midlands Partnership said: ”Any redundancy payments are made in line with a person’s terms and conditions. We are covered by national NHS terms and conditions, which determine contractually the payment to be made in a redundancy situation.”

The trust with the highest spend over the last two financial years was Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Partnership Trust, which paid a total of £5.7m — £2.3m in 2016-17 rising to £3.4m in 2017-18.

A spokesman for the trust, now renamed Midlands Partnership FT, said: “During the financial years 2016-17 and 2017-18, the former Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Partnership Trust undertook a number of service redesigns in response to commissioner strategy.

“Whilst all redundancy payments were recorded in the trust’s end of year accounts, almost £3m of these payments were met by commissioners.”

Mersey Care FT, the third highest spender, has acquired two other providers in the last two years.

Trusts with the highest spend on compulsory redundancies over the past two financial years

Organisation name17-18 (£’000)16-17 (£’000)Two-year total (£’000)
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Partnership Trust 3,384 2,300 5,684
Essex Partnership University FT 4,900 - 4,900
South West Yorkshire Partnership FT 967 2,265 3,232
Mersey Care FT 1,669 1,169 2,838
West Midlands Ambulance Service FT - 2,205 2,205