HC Deb 04 November 1997 vol 300 c179W
Mr. Simon Hughes

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the number of additional patients the NHS will be able to treat due to management savings between 1 October 1997 and 31 March 1998. [13323]

Mr. Milburn

We set targets to reduce National Health Service management costs in 1997–98 by £100 million. Many of the savings achieved will already have been re-invested locally in direct patient care services. In addition, we have directly invested £10 million of the savings from deferring the 8th wave of general practitioner fundholders in improving breast cancer services, so that all women have speedy access to high quality diagnosis and treatment. We have also invested a further £5 million in strengthening paediatric intensive care services in readiness for the winter. It is estimated that at the start of this financial year health authorities were planning to purchase an additional 66,000 elective episodes—cases treated from waiting lists—in 1997–98 when compared with 1996–97.