Belfast Trust launches public consultation on savings plan

24/08/2017

Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, along with other Trusts in the wider Health and Social Care system, has published its draft savings plans for 2017/18.

The Belfast Trust’s draft savings plans will contribute £23.6m to address the significant financial pressures facing health and social care in 2017/18 and to meet the statutory requirement to break even.

Whilst we must fulfil our statutory responsibility to develop a balanced financial position we have striven to balance any risk to patient or client safety and we have aimed to minimise impact on the majority of people who use or need our services. We have proposed actions that will provide the required level of financial savings within a challenging timeframe; and we have endeavoured to ensure that should any of these proposals be enacted post-public consultation, that they will have limited impact on the strategic direction of the Trust.

We will make every effort over the next six weeks to engage as widely as possible with those who use our services. We will consult with as many stakeholders and special interest groups as we can and we would encourage as many people as possible to respond to this public consultation.

A Department of Health spokesperson said: “The indicative resource allocation for the Department of Health is £5,095.4m, which provides an additional £224.8m for Health, when compared against the allocated budget at the start of the 2016/17 financial year.  This indicative allocation includes the additional one-off, allocation of £60.1m, in July from the Secretary of State. Despite this, the financial challenge for Health remains significant due to inflation, (widely recognised as 6% per annum), an increasing and ageing population and the cost of new treatments. HSC Trusts have been tasked by the Department with developing draft savings plans to deliver a total of £70m of savings in 2017/18 which must be achieved as part of the financial plan for this year. The HSCB will work with the Trusts during the consultation period to develop actions to mitigate as far as possible the proposed temporary service changes to maintain quality of provision. Maintaining patient safety remains the prime priority for the HSC.”

The consultation papers are available on our website (http://www.belfasttrust.hscni.net/about/Consultations.htm) and we hope as many people as possible will give us their views and opinions to help shape what our savings plan proposals will look like.