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09
Aug

Minister launches strategy to save £1.5bn


A radical new blueprint for how the NHS buys everything - from rubber gloves and stitches to new hips, building work, bedpans and temporary staff - has been unveiled by health minister Dr Dan Poulter. His new strategy for NHS procurement aims to cut wasteful spending, allowing cash to be ploughed back into the frontline for patient care. It details ambitious plans to save £1.5bn by getting the NHS to use its money more smartly and efficiently.

Dr Poulter said: “The government is putting an extra £12.7bn into our NHS, but that money needs to be spent much more wisely by local hospitals. When our NHS is the single biggest organisation in the UK, hospitals must wake up to the potential to make big savings and radically change the way they buy supplies, goods, services and how they manage their estates.

“We must end the scandalous situation where one hospital spends hundreds of thousands more than another hospital just down the road on something as simple as rubber gloves or syringes, simply because they haven’t got the right systems in place to ensure value for money for local patients. This kind of poor resource management cannot go on, and this radical new strategy will help our NHS get a grip on wasteful spending to drive real change and improved procurement practices, so that more of our NHS’s resources can be spent on frontline patient care.

“The money saved though our plans to cut wasteful NHS spending can be spent instead on the things that really matter – such as more operations or revolutionary new treatments.”

Dr Poulter’s new strategy, Better Procurement, Better Value, Better Care: A Procurement Development Programme for the NHS, takes an open look at the procurement inefficiencies that currently exist in the NHS. It also identifies an over reliance on framework agreements at the expense of the NHS striking radical money-saving deals, like hospitals getting together to bulk-buy equipment for a discount.

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