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Barking and Dagenham hospital trust has the second largest debt in England, report shows

PUBLISHED: 16:00 20 September 2012 | UPDATED: 14:51 24 September 2012

Queen's in Romford is expanding its maternity unit

Queen's in Romford is expanding its maternity unit

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The hospital trust which treats Barking and Dagenham patients was saddled with the second largest deficit in the country this year, a report showed today.

The hospital trust which treats Barking and Dagenham patients was saddled with the second largest deficit in the country this year, a new report shows.

Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust went £49.9million into the red in March 2012, research by the Audit Commission confirmed.

Only South London Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs Queen Mary’s Hospital in Sidcup, the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Woolwich and the Princess Royal University Hospital in Bromley, faced larger debts.

The south London group was put into administration this summer after ending up with a £65.1m deficit.

“The Trust is being forced to find savings it simply hasn’t got at a time when demand for services is increasing locally,” said Margaret Hodge, MP for Barking. “It faces some stark choices: cut existing services, reconfigure services across both King George and Queen’s Hospitals or close King George.”

The Post reported last week how the government was to plough up to £17m each year into Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust.

The extra funding will be used to help to pay for the privately-funded Queen’s Hospital in Romford, which opened in 2006.

Hospital trust chief executive, Averil Dongworth, said: “There are a number of factors which have contributed to the trust’s deficit, but there has been particular financial pressure put on us by our Private Finance Initiative payments for Queen’s Hospital.

“We are pleased that we are one of seven trusts identified by the Department of Health to receive additional support towards our PFI costs.

“To ensure we receive this financial support, we are working on our long-term financial model, detailing how we will achieve financial balance over the next three to five years.”

The east London hospital trust is hoping to reduce its deficit to £40m in 2012/13.

Meanwhile, the PCT which has run doctor’s surgeries in Barking and Dagenham, NHS North East London & the City, had a surplus in 2011/12, the Audit Commission said.


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