Saturday, October 1, 2011

60 UK hospitals facing closure due to PFI debt

Public funds to be taken out of NHS to support private deals. 

Public Values
September 22, 2011

England's National Health Service (NHS) is set to suffer cutbacks as hospital closures put extra strain on the system, reports Daniel Martin of the Daily Mail. Trusts operating hospitals are unable to pay debt accumulated through the private financing [PFI=Private Funding Initiative] of building the hospitals.

"Hospitals could be forced to close as they buckle under the huge debt left behind by private finance initiative deals, the Health Secretary warned yesterday. 

Andrew Lansley said 22 NHS trusts are facing major financial difficulties because they cannot afford to repay huge annual fees for building work carried out under Labour. 

In some cases, the repayments account for a third of their entire budget — putting pressure on finances and threatening front-line patient services. Mr. Lansley said Labour had left the Health Service with an 'enormous legacy of debt'…"
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