NHS Highland revealed it is seeking more than £11m from the Scottish Government to balance its books this financial year, after a team of experts were recruited to help tackle its ‘significant financial challenge’.
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) was brought in for six months last year and found almost £20m in savings.
The savings were found in more efficient prescribing, reductions in the cost of health supplies, reducing the cost of medical agency staffing, and enhanced expenditure controls.
NHSH director of finance David Garden told yesterday’s NHSH board meeting that in the nine months to December 2019, the health authority has overspent against budget by £10.3m, with a year end forecast deficit of £13.9m.
Brokerage of £11.4m has been approved by the Scottish Government, leaving NHSH £2.5m down on their target deficit for the year.
An additional £1.5m cost pressure is looming from an increase in a service agreement with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, still under discussion between both parties.
Mr Garden said around £6m of cost pressures come from locum, agency and prescribing costs.
Raigmore Hospital costs makes up more than £3m of the deficit, partly linked to agency costs, increased prescribing issues along with clinical supplies, short stay ward and medical rota gaps.
Mitigating measures of more than £4m have so far been actioned, including areas including procurement, recruitment, professional fees and funded programmes.