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Health Services: Private Sector

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN 100628, tabled on 10 January 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of the three month agreement between the NHS and private healthcare providers, as announced on 10 January 2022.

Answered on

18 January 2022

The new national arrangements with the independent sector will help the National Health Service to ensure all patients needing urgent care can be treated this winter, regardless of the impact of the Omicron variant. NHS England has estimated a minimum cost of between £75 million and £90 million per month whilst the ‘surge arrangements’ within the contract are not activated. This is equivalent to the value of elective activity delivered in January to March 2021. In the absence of surge activation, we do not expect there to be significant additional spending with the independent sector providers above normal Quarter 4 levels.

If surge arrangements are activated, NHS England has estimated the maximum cost to be £175 million per month. However, this is based on surge arrangements being activated nationally, which is considered unlikely.