Private Finance Initiative - Treasury Contents

Written evidence submitted by Frances Kelly

Many more eloquent than I have dissected the effects of PFI. I would like to say the following:

In the late 1990s I wrote and submitted a letter to Manchester Health Authority on behalf of the Unison Branch covering South Manchester Health Services. In it I set out the excess costs of the proposed PFI scheme to rebuild Wythenshawe hospital, over a publicly-financed scheme. The Finance Director of the HA agreed but the scheme went ahead. In about 2005 figures became available through the Board papers of Central Manchester PCT showing that every NHS organisation in Greater Manchester was being top-sliced to provide funds or the debt thereby incurred to "South Manchester"—ie UHSM—that is all NHS organisations in Greater Manchester were losing funds for services to pay for the PFI scheme. Later the funding arrangements were changed so the transactions were no longer visible.

It is a disgrace that the Government authorises PFI and thereby puts excessive profits into these private companies. It is even worse that no extra funding is provided so that the NHS has to pay out of money which should be providing services. It is a final disgrace that this present Government has condemned PFI yet is allowing a large number of new schemes to proceed including the Royal Liverpool hospital. Liverpool is an area of deprivation and can ill afford to lose any monies which should be dedicated to providing NHS services not paying into companies' profits.

April 2011

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Prepared 10 August 2011