Mid Yorkshire Hospitals trust referred to health secretary over debt fears

Pinderfields Hospital
Pinderfields Hospital

Government auditors have raised fears that the trust which runs the district’s hospitals is in too much debt.

Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust, which is around £20m in the red, is on a list of 19 NHS organisations which the Audit Commission says are in financial difficulties.

The commission has referred the trusts to health secretary Jeremy Hunt over concerns that some cannot balance their books.

But Mid Yorkshire, which runs Pinderfields, Pontefract and Dewsbury hospitals, pointed out that it has plans in place to break even, as part of a re-organisation of its services.

Robert Chadwick, the trust’s director of finance and corporate services, said: “We are committed to providing the very best care for patients whilst at the same time providing good value for taxpayers.

“Last year the trust agreed to report a financial deficit of around £20m, which we achieved.

“This year we have agreed a financial plan which allows us to report a deficit of £17m and we are currently on target to achieve this.”

Further plans to balance the books at Mid Yorkshire had been agreed with the government, Mr Chadwick said.

H e added: “As part of this plan the trust will eliminate the deficit altogether by 2017.”

Mid Yorkshire is planning to centralise the care of critically-ill and injured accident and emergency patients at Pinderfields Hospital.

Pontefract and Dewsbury will have urgent care centres treating minor ailments.

Consultant-led maternity care will also be centralised at Pinderfields as complex births are transferred there from Dewsbury.