Bosses warned over hospital overspend

HOSPITAL managers are being asked to spread their spending throughout the year, after Ipswich Hospital overspent by more than £200,000 in just two months.

HOSPITAL managers are being asked to spread their spending throughout the year, after Ipswich Hospital overspent by more than £200,000 in just two months.

At a recent meeting of Ipswich Hospital's trust, director of finance and performance Chris Dooley stressed it would be unfair to judge the spending at such an early stage in the financial year.

But he said it was imperative that department heads within the hospital took action to stop the overspend spiralling upwards. The hospital has an annual income of £129million, and staff expenditure is in line with the hospital's budget since April.

However drugs, and medical and surgical costs, have proved much higher.


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Mr Dooley said the 'significant overspend' was really a matter of timing, and said: "We are trying to ensure managers know they have to phase expenditure during the year. That will be in part, why we are seeing an overspend, which is not unusual at this time of year. A lot of equipment is bought in April, and we will be asking managers to refrain from spending without phasing it throughout the year.

"A more accurate assessment of our financial position, taking account of month 3, will be available within 10-12 days. This will give the trust a more robust basis on which to assess performance.

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"We have no problems paying invoices, however there are improvements we need to make."

Mr Dooley said work was also under way to establish which drug bills were proving to be more expensive than planned.

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