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Local healthcare funding “strikingly fragmented”

11 April 2013

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Government reforms to simplify primary care funding have made the system “strikingly more fragmented”, according to a King’s Fund report. 

Resource allocation determines how much public money clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) and local authorities receive from the Department of Health (DH). 

Recent reforms have created a split between public health and NHS allocations and the new role for NHS England in making decisions on NHS allocations. 

The report argues that the new approach risks “undermining” other government politics that emphasise the importance of providing integrated care. 

The King’s Fund has called for a “long-term reassessment” of the way resource allocation works in England. 

Future priorities 

NHS England is currently undertaking a review of the allocation formula, announced in December 2012. 

But the independent healthcare research charity believes the review should focus on how resource allocation is suited to future priorities. 

David Buck, Senior Fellow at The King’s Fund said: “Recent reforms bring major changes to resource allocation, risking confusion and complexity. As the funding squeeze bites, it is crucial that we think carefully about how and why health spending is allocated. 

“NHS England’s fundamental review is an opportunity for much-needed debate about what we hope to achieve through that funding in future.” 

The NHS England and Department of Health have yet to comment.