Leicester's hospitals in £40m deficit in 2013/14, claim Labour

Money and a doctor Image copyright Science Photo Library
Image caption University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust had a shortfall of £39.8m in the 2013/14 financial year

Leicester's hospitals were operating with a deficit of nearly £40m last year - the worst in England, according to figures obtained by Labour.

University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust had a shortfall of £39.8m in the 2013/14 financial year.

The trust said it was caused by not receiving expected income and increases in costs, including extra nurses.

Leicester West MP and shadow health minister Liz Kendall has blamed the government's reorganisation of the NHS.

Hospital chief executive John Adler said: "The Department of Health is providing cash support to ensure that we can continue to meet our obligations during the year.

"We have set much more realistic budgets and have quality-assessed all savings schemes to ensure that any impact on quality is minimised.

Image caption Leicester MP Liz Kendall said the government's NHS reorganisation was to blame for the deficit

"We are currently finalising a five-year strategic plan which incorporates a financial recovery strategy that will see the trust return to financial balance over a number of years."

'NHS on track'

The figures have been collated by Labour in Leicester using information from the health watchdog, Monitor, the Trust Development Authority and the House of Commons Library.

Ms Kendall said she believed the state of NHS finances nationally was getting worse.

She claimed one in three hospital trusts in England were in deficit in 2013/14.

"We know that there are real problems in terms of finances of our local hospitals," she said.

"The problem has been that the government has spent the last three or four years on this huge backroom NHS reorganisation that's wasted money, time and effort."

The Labour analysis comes as health chiefs have warned the NHS nationally could be facing a £2bn deficit from April 2015.

But in a statement, the Department of Health said: "The NHS is on track to make £20bn savings this parliament and we are confident that it will continue to make the savings necessary to meet rising demand."

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