The Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond has announced today an investment of £3.5bn for buildings and facilities in the NHS England by 2022/2023.
Of this money, £2.6bn will flow into the NHS’ sustainability and transformation partnerships (STPs), to help them improve facilities and help local areas to focus on providing more integrated care for patients, and better meet demand for services.
The Budget set today also allocates £200m to efficiency programmes that will help the NHS reduce its energy bills, for instance, and fund technology that will help staff dedicate more time to treating patients.
Following Mr Hammond statement on how he wants to secure Britain’s position as a world leader in technology, he promised the Government will enter a partnership with Trades Union Congress (TUC) and Confederation of British Industry (CBI) to ‘boost digital skills in the workforce’.
Despite continuous demands to deliver the £350m promised to the NHS during last year’s Brexit campaign and ‘a sustainable funding settlement’ , the Chancellor allocated £335m to the NHS to cope with winter pressures only.
Responding to the Budget, the chief executive of NHS Providers Chris Hopson said: ‘However, it is disappointing that the government has not been able to give the NHS all that it needed to deal with rising demand, fully recover performance targets, consistently maintain high quality patient care and meet the NHS’s capital requirements.
‘We also note that the extra revenue has been tied to acute hospital performance at a point when the pressures across the rest of the health service – community, mental health and ambulance services – are just as great.’