EXCLUSIVE: Black Country hospitals sitting on spare £134m

The NHS in Staffordshire made huge £40 million losses while hospitals in the Black Country are sitting on more than £130 million in spare cash, the Express & Star today reveals.

EXCLUSIVE: Black Country hospitals sitting on spare £134m

The now-dissolved Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust overspent by £24.8 million in its final year and the University Hospital of North Staffordshire (UHNS) spent £19 million more than budgeted.

And bosses at the University Hospitals of North Midlands Trust, which now runs the former Stafford Hospital and the Royal Stoke Hospital, admitted they have no cash reserves.

At the end the last financial year, UHNS had just £1.5 million in the bank.

But four Black Country hospitals and West Midlands Ambulance Service made combined profits of £29 million with £134 million in cash at the bank last year.

South Staffordshire MP Gavin Williamson said the spare cash raised questions why large amounts of money were not being spent.

He said: "What this highlights is that the money is there but we need to question if it is being spent in the right way?

"The question that has to be asked of trust chief executives is why this money is not being used for patient care? We don't want hospitals hoarding huge amounts of money."

The Royal Wolverhampton Trust, which now runs Cannock Hospital, has made a surpluses for eight years in a row worth a total of £61 million.

They have £34.4 million in the bank from these surpluses.

Dudley Group of Hospitals, which runs Russells Hall hospital, ran a surplus of £351,000 and had £26 million in cash in the bank by the end of last year.

Walsall Healthcare Trust ran a surplus of £12.2 million and had £10.5 million in the bank.

Sandwell and West Birmingham Trust made a £6,751,000 surplus with £42 million in the bank

And West Midlands Ambulance Service was £2.5 million in the black and has a total of £20 million in the bank.

It comes as the funding of the NHS has been thrust into the spotlight as it struggles to cope with unpredicted demand on services with more hospitals warning they have to cut costs or slip into the red.

Bosses vow that the money will be reinvested into services and buildings.

Chris Adcock, director of finance at University Hospitals of North Midlands, said: "We face a tough financial challenge, but it must be emphasised that we will not be compromising on services or the quality of care which UHNM provides to the local population."

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