Children’s Hospital faces up to 5% savings

MANAGERS at Sheffield Children’s Hospital said this week they were “fully prepared” for the challenge of making 5% savings over the next year.

Like many public sector organisations, the hospital was faced with delivering efficiency savings while continuing to provide high quality services to patients and families, said trust chief executive Chris Sharratt.

But within a new budget of £125m, investment was also being made in several major specialist services.

Mr Sharratt said: “We know 2011/12 is set to be a challenge for the NHS. However we are fully prepared to meet the demands of change. All public sector organisations up and down the country are facing financial pressures and are looking closely at efficiencies.

“A full review of services each department in the trust provides will be used to see where savings and efficiencies can be made. Staff are being kept fully involved in this work.

“We are controlling pay budgets by closely reviewing all vacancies.

“Our approach is to be open with staff and trade unions and to include them in our discussions.”

Mr Sharratt added: “It is vitally important to recognise that our overall objective in this process is to ensure we protect our services and continue to offer the best and most efficient healthcare for children and support for families.”

During the last financial year, the hospital treated 155,000 patients from South Yorkshire, North Derbyshire and North Lincolnshire.

In addition, its expertise and specialist services attracted patients from across the world.

Specialist services to be further developed this year include child mental health service, neurosciences, genetics and orthopaedics.

The trust is spending £5m in the latest phase of development of the Becton Centre at Beighton, which supports children and young people with mental health conditions.