LETTER: A few more questions on NHS costs

More than 400 patients were reported missing from hospitals and other NHS sites in Leeds in 2015/16. Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
More than 400 patients were reported missing from hospitals and other NHS sites in Leeds in 2015/16. Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

The North Kirklees CCG engagement about people’s attitudes to costs in the NHS did not answer several questions.

In the list of costs considered affordable in the reshaped NHS there are: nearly £2 billion a year in PFI rents and maintenance; £1billion to management consultancies to advise on endless restructuring plans, including ‘turnaround managers’ on nearly £750,000-a-year salaries; advertising agencies and logo redesigns as hospitals compete for business, and at least £4 billion in the costs of the ‘market’.

Putting contracts out to tender, buying and selling services, billing and invoicing, is an expensive business, great for accountants, lawyers and management consultancies, but very disruptive for services. Why?

Also why is it OK for outsourced NHS services companies to have debts with interest at 20 per cent paid for by their NHS revenue, but not for publicly run hospitals to have a deficit, or for CCGs to continue to treat their patients?

Christine Hyde, by email