In private treatment centres for NHS, £500m wasted
In a Labour plan to reduce waiting times and make choices better and varied, millions for operations that actually never happened were paid to private firms and this was done in overly generous contracts drawn up by the Department of Health.
According to a study by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, when these contracts were ending, more cash was received by the independent providers for their buildings and also when a second wave of clinics was cut back, compensation was paid to them.
Most of the walk-in centres that were new are closing down as they are not being used enough due to allowing busy workers to see doctors near their offices under the £1.5billion scheme.
The Independent Sector Treatment Centre initiative that has no future is expected to waste more public money on like projects as private providers will get more opportunities provided by the controversial reforms to the NHS.
Allyson Pollock, professor of public health research and policy at Queen Mary, University of London, said, “If the reforms go ahead, the poor value for money of ISTCs will be multiplied one hundred times over. In a time of economic austerity this will be a catastrophe for the NHS if more private providers are brought in.”
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