PFI (private finance initiative) is crippling NHS hospital trusts, according to a report from the IPPR thinktank, as they will have to make another £55bn in payments by the time the last contract ends in 2050.
The private sector-funded investment in new hospitals initially cost £13bn, but will end up costing the NHS in England a whopping £80bn by the time all contracts come to an end, noted the IPPR report.
There are some NHS trusts that are spending as much as one-sixth of their entire budget on repaying debts due as a result of the PFI scheme, introduced by Tony Blair’s Labour government.
Many trusts are in deficit and struggling to cope with fast-rising demands for care and these findings raise fears that money is being diverted fears and could damage the quality of care and risk patient safety because trusts do not have funds to hire enough staff.
Full story in The Guardian, 12 September 2019