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Jane Kennedy: I certainly will not give way to the hon. Gentleman. [Hon. Members: "Ooh."] Well, he made what I consider a most sarcastic contribution and made a number of interventions, so if the House will allow me, I will move on.
We are establishing the right culture for financial balance. We are changing the incentives associated with the performance-rating system, so that those hospitals and PCTs that are failing to meet their financial duties are identified in performance reviews. We are also designing a major drive to improve NHS productivity and efficiency. For example, we know that cutting unnecessary emergency admissionsan issue mentioned by several Labour Memberscould help the NHS to save more than £400 million a year through better assessment processes and improved patient care in primary and community settings.
In the minority of organisations where there are significant overspends, we are taking action now to identify and correct the financial problems. I anticipate that this work will continue for at least 18 months, and it will be driven from the centre. At the same time, it will aim to build turnaround experience within the NHS to reduce reliance on external support. In some of these organisations, the overspend is large and it may take more than one yearI hope that my hon. Friends hear what I am sayingto return to financial balance. In these cases, we expect the new strategic health authorities to take the lead in developing and implementing a financial strategy for managing the situation in their locality. This will include creating local reserves to deal with local problems. The size of the reserves and the contribution from each PCT will vary according to local circumstances, but the underlying principle will be fairness.
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Jane Kennedy: If the hon. Gentleman will forgive me, I will not as I have only one minute left. We expect SHAs to have full regard to the financial and service position of each organisation in determining how reserves are generated and applied. However, some SHAs may not be able to deliver a financially balanced position next year without unacceptable service consequencesa point made by a number of my hon. Friends. Where that is so, we will incentivise others to deliver a surplus to cover the situation. The money will not be moved and underspending SHAs will retain the resources for spend in future years, but the system as a whole will balance.
It being Ten o'clock, Mr. Deputy Speaker proceeded to put forthwith the Questions relating to Estimates which he was directed to put at that hour, pursuant to Standing Order No. 54(4) and (5) (Consideration of estimates) and Order [9 March].
It being after Ten o'clock, Mr. Deputy Speaker proceeded to put forthwith the Questions relating to Estimates which he was directed to put at that hour, pursuant to Standing Order No. 55(1) and (3) (Questions on voting of estimates, &c.) and Order [9 March].
That, during the year ending with 31st March 2007, a number not exceeding 42,050 all ranks be maintained for Naval Service and that numbers in the Reserve Naval and Marine Forces be authorised for the purposes of Parts 1, 3, 4 and 5 of the Reserve Forces Act 1996 up to the maximum numbers set out in HC 869 of this Session.
That, during the year ending with 31st March 2007, a number not exceeding 126,945 all ranks be maintained for Army Service and that numbers in the Reserve Land Forces be authorised for the purposes of Parts 1, 3, 4 and 5 of the Reserve Forces Act 1996 up to the maximum numbers set out in HC 869 of this Session.
That, during the year ending with 31st March 2007, a number not exceeding 52,110 all ranks be maintained for Air Force Service and that numbers in the Reserve Air Forces be authorised for the purposes of Parts 1, 3, 4 and 5 of the Reserve Forces Act 1996 up to the maximum numbers set out in HC 869 of this Session.
That for the year that ended with 31st March 2005, resources, not exceeding £188,157,000.00, be authorised for use to make good excesses of certain resources for defence and civil services as set out in HC 896.
That a Bill be brought in upon the foregoing Resolutions relating to Supplementary Estimates, 200506, and Excesses, 200405, and the Resolution of 8th December relating to Supplementary Estimates, 200506: And that the Chairman of Ways and Means, Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mr. Des Browne, John Healey, Dawn Primarolo and Mr. Ivan Lewis do prepare and bring it in.
John Healey accordingly presented a Bill to authorise the use of resources for the service of the years ending with 31st March 2005 and 31st March 2006 and to apply certain sums out of the Consolidated Fund to the service of the year ending with 31st March 2006; and to appropriate the supply authorised in this Session of Parliament for the service of the year ending with 31st March 2005 and the further supply authorised in this session of Parliament for the service of the year ending with 31st March 2006. And the same was read the first time; and ordered to be printed [Bill 149].
That the Hill Farm Allowance Regulations 2006 (S.I., 2006, No. 225), dated 6th February 2006 and the Bee Diseases and Pest Control (England) Order 2006 (S.I., 2006, No. 342), dated 15th February 2006, be referred to Standing Committees on Delegated Legislation.[Tony Cunningham.]
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