Monitor will not back tax breaks for private NHS providers

Health regulator Monitor has ruled out calling for corporation tax exemptions for private NHS providers in a report due next month.

David Bennett: fair playing field recommendations
David Bennett: fair playing field recommendations

Private companies responding to a consultation on the health regulator's 'Fair Playing Field Review', which looks at whether there is an equal footing for all providers to bid for NHS services, argued it was unfair for them to pay the tax when NHS providers do not.

But a spokeswoman for Monitor said: ‘There is no draft report of the Fair Playing Field Review and Monitor does not intend to provide a running commentary on the review. Monitor has yet to decide what recommendations it will make to the secretary of state.

'However, in the light of recent media speculation, Monitor has decided to clarify the position on one specific issue. While it is the case that corporation tax is one of many distortions that the review is looking at, Monitor will not be recommending that private sector providers should be exempt from paying corporation tax.’

Any decision to exempt private providers will be taken by health secretary Jeremy Hunt. In a letter to the Guardian yesterday, Monitor’s chief executive, David Bennett, confirmed that it had ‘received representations concerning tax from providers from the charitable sector as well as the private sector’. Public sector respondents have warned that having to comply with Freedom of Information requests and ‘employee benefits’ put them at a disadvantage compared to private providers.


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