Call to divert NHS surplus to pay for extended hours

The NHS Alliance is urging the NHS to use the predicted £1.8 billion surplus to help practices opening extended hours.

Analysis of spending in the first nine months of the financial year suggests a surplus of 2.3 per cent of the total budget for 2007/8, or £1.8 billion.

The NHS Alliance suggests the funds could be used to extend availability of blood tests and diagnostic services. It adds that the surplus could be used to support extended hours for the full primary care team.

NHS Alliance chairman Dr Michael Dixon said: ‘A significant part of the NHS surplus should be released to support extended access.'

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