HC Deb 19 May 2004 vol 421 cc1026-7W
Mr. Dismore

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many personal injury cases have resulted in repayment of NHS costs to the NHS in each of the last five years; what the total amount recovered was; what the categories of cases are from which recovery is expected; what the maximum amounts recoverable for each kind of treatment are; and if he will make a statement on(a) the trend in recovery of NHS costs and (b) his future plans for the recoupment scheme. [R][173562]

Ms Rosie Winterton

[holding answer 17 May 2004]: Under the provisions of the Road Traffic (NHS Charges) Act 1999, national health service hospital treatment costs can be recovered in cases where a person injured in a road traffic accident makes a successful claim for personal injury compensation. The costs are recovered from insurers, not the injured person. The charges are calculated using a tariff, which is currently set at £473 for treatment without admission, a daily rate fee of £582 for treatment with admission and there is a ceiling of charges which is set at £34,800.

The table shows the number of settled claims for personal injury compensation following a road traffic accident that resulted in a payment to the NHS and the total amounts paid to NHS hospitals in England, Scotland and Wales for each of the last five years.

Number of cases resulting

in repayment of NHS costs

Amounts recovered and

paid to NHS hospitals

(£ million)

1999–2000 67,466 30.05
2000–01 148,249 75.9
2001–02 182,006 98.3
2002–03 195,643 105.03
2003–04 185,533 105.7

Provisions contained in the Health and Social Care (Community Health and Standards) Act 2003 allow the current system of recovery of NHS costs to be expanded so that NHS hospital treatment costs and NHS ambulance service costs will be recoverable in all cases where personal injury compensation is paid. This will in the main include employer and public liability claims, in addition to road traffic accident claims. The new scheme is due to commence on 1 April 2005. It is estimated that the expanded scheme will recover an additional £150 million per year when its full impact is realised in several years' time.