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Spring Budget 2024: NHS England welcomes extra £2.45bn funding

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The government also announced a £3.4bn investment in capital to fund new technology to boost NHS productivity

UK Chancellor Jeremy Hunt presented the Spring Budget 2024 on Wednesday, making two big announcements for the NHS in England.

Hunt announced an additional £2.5 billion in day-to-day revenue funding for the fiscal year 2024/25 and another £3.4 billion to boost NHS productivity through a variety of tech-related investments.

Next year’s health resource departmental expenditure limits (DEL) are set at £179.6 billion, with NHS England allocated £164.9 billion, marking an increase from this year’s £163.2 billion.

NHSE welcomed the budget boost and appreciated the government’s continued support for the service.

Responding to the budget, Amanda Pritchard, the Chief Executive of the NHS, said: “Today’s announcement shows the government continues to back the NHS and the £2.45bn of extra funding for next year ensures we have the support we need to make continued progress on our key priorities for patients.”

Pritchard added that the £3.4bn investment in capital to fund new technology will enable the NHS to commit to achieving 2 per cent annual productivity growth in the final two years of the next Parliament and unlock tens of billions of savings.

Through a variety of AI, digital and other tech-related measures, the government is anticipating to unlock £35 billion worth of savings from 2025-26 to 2029-30.

Of this £3.4 billion investment, £2 billion will be used to update “fragmented and outdated” IT systems across the NHS. This is expected to reduce 13 million hours wasted by doctors every year and enable up to £4 billion of savings over five years.

A £1 billion investment is earmarked for transforming “the use of data to reduce time spent on unproductive administrative tasks by NHS staff”, which is expected to help the health service save more than £3 billion over five years.

Another £430 million will be used to improve access and services for patients to facilitate savings of £6.5 billion over five years.

Hunt also announced a £35 million investment to be made by the government and the NHS over three years to improve maternity safety across England.

This new budget also included an additional funding of £45 million for medical research, with £3 million allocated for Cancer Research UK.

 

 

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