A new report by 2020health's Chief Executive, Julia Manning, is entitled "Stealing the NHS: How careless is the NHS being with our tax money?", and is based on the findings of a survey of 357 NHS Trusts including hospitals and Primary Care Trusts.
- 3 NHS Trusts had, in one or more of the past 3 years, undertaken NO fraud investigations – the most was 90 in one year
- Only half of Foundation Trusts (and all Hospitals have been told they have to become Foundation Trusts) responded to the survey – compared to 87% of PCTs
- The current regulations only ask about the activity reporting process, not any outcomes, e.g. how much money has gone missing or how they have reduced fraud
249 Trusts (out of 357) in all responded, the breakdown of which is:
- Response rate from NHS Foundation Trusts: 49.6%, 47.7% of these withheld some or all information
- Response rate from Acute Hospital Trusts: 87%, 52.2% of these withheld some or all information
- Response rate from Primary Care Trusts: 78.5%, 47.9% of these withheld some or all information
The report recommends NHS Trusts are more transparent about counter-fraud activity and spending, that reporting requirements are changed to provide clear and accurate information about fraud losses and what preventative measures are in place, and to fine NHS Trusts who do not publish information about their counter-fraud outcomes.
Julia Manning said:
"We were shocked at the complacency of some NHS Trusts. They seem to have forgotten that it is our tax money that they are responsible for and that we have a right to know that it's being spent on healthcare. Others Trusts were obviously taking scrutiny of their spending very seriously. At a time when the NHS is being asked to save £4bn a year it’s incredible to think that so much money is being stolen while patients are being denied new drugs."