Failing to capitalise: Capital spending in the NHS

The Health Foundation | March 2019 | Failing to capitalise: Capital spending in the NHS

This briefing from The Health Foundation, analyses trends in the capital budget comparing the UK with international averages on healthcare spend. Failing to capitalise Capital spending in the NHS uses data from NHS Trusts across England, focusing on trends in the capital spending of NHS trusts in order to analyse where money has been spent and where there are areas of need. Using analysis of  the implications of recent capital spending, with a specific focus on NHS trusts’ maintenance backlog. It concludes with a discussion of the trends in capital spending and capital levels, and implications and recommendations for future health care funding. 



Read online 


Mental health services: Addressing the care deficit

This new report reveals deep disquiet among NHS mental health trust leaders about a substantial care deficit resulting from the impact of growing social and economic hardship in their communities | NHS Providers

This report looks at the levels of demand reported by frontline leaders across the range of services they provide, and examines what lies behind the growing pressures. In particular the report identifies widespread concerns about benefits cuts and the impact of universal credit. It also suggests that loneliness, homelessness and financial hardship are adding to pressures on NHS mental health services.

The report reveals a significant unmet need for a number of mental health conditions – particularly community services for adults and children, gender identity services and crisis home treatment teams – and NHS commissioning decisions have resulted in services being cut or reduced. Our survey indicated that 69% of mental health leaders are worried about maintaining the quality of services over the next two years.

To overcome the demand challenge facing mental health services, the authors suggest national policy must focus on increased support for both mental health and public health.

Full detail at NHS Providers

See also: NHS bosses: Benefit stress driving mental health care demand | The Guardian


Fair Funding For Mental Health

Fair Funding For Mental Health: Putting Parity Into Practice | Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR)

The NHS is currently in the process of writing a long-term plan that will set out what it wants to achieve with additional funding and how this funding will be allocated. This report argues that it is crucial that this plan raises our ambitions on mental health, what parity of esteem looks like and how much it will cost to get there.

The report states the NHS must scale up access to – and improve the quality of care – across all areas of treatment. In consultation with the sector, the authors identify the following themes that the long-term plan must address:

  • more investment in early intervention for children and young people (CAMHS)
  • scale up access to treatment for common mental health conditions such as
    depression and anxiety including through Improving Access to Psychological
    Therapies (IAPT)
  • provide universal high-quality community care for people severely affected
    with conditions such as psychosis, bipolar disorder, personality disorder and
    eating disorders
  • provide universal high-quality liaison and 24/7 crisis care for people living with
    poor mental health
  • reduce inpatient admissions, with more people treated in the community and
    supported at an earlier stage of their condition
  • set up a Mental Health Innovation Fund (MHIF) to spread best practise across
    the system.


Public health grant funding gap

Taking our health for granted: plugging the public health grant funding gap | The Health Foundation 

This briefing paper assesses the extent of cuts to the public health grant since 2014/15 and projects the amount required per year to plug the funding gap that now exists is £3.2 billion. It highlights that cuts have not protected areas with the greatest deprivation or need. At a time of ongoing wider cuts to public services that directly impact on people’s health, and with the NHS under pressure, this approach risks widening health inequalities.

Full briefing: Taking our health for granted: plugging the public health grant funding gap

Additional link: Health Foundation press release

Improved Better Care Fund

Reports on data collected from local authorities outlining how the £1.01 billion allocated for 2017-18 has been used | Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government

At Spring Budget 2017, local government was provided with an additional £2 billion funding for adult social care. This funding was to be spent through the Improved Better Care Fund over the period 2017-18 to 2019-20.

The purpose of the grant is to:

  • meet adult social care needs
  • reduce pressures on NHS, including supporting more people to be discharged from hospital when ready
  • ensure that the local social care provider market is supported

As a condition of the funding, local authorities were required to report quarterly to MHCLG. This publication reports on data collected from local authorities outlining how the £1.01 billion allocated for 2017-18 has been used.

Full document: Improved Better Care Fund (iBCF): Quarterly and year-end reporting  2017-18

The reality behind the 2019–24 NHS funding settlement

NHS Confederation | October 2018 | The reality behind the 2019–24 NHS funding settlement

NHS Confederation have developed an infographic that  outlines the financial challenge facing the NHS over the next five years.

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It warns that commissioners and providers will need to continue to make considerable efficiency savings to remain in balance.

The document also looks at why the NHS deficit has developed, despite considerable efficiency savings delivered by both providers and commissioners.


Download the infographic from NHS Confederation

Wellcome funding available for innovative health research

Wellcome | Innovator Awards 

Researchers who are transforming great ideas into healthcare innovations that could have a significant impact on human health are eligible to apply for funding awards from the Wellcome Trust. The awards are up to £500,000, or up to £750,000 for multidisciplinary collaborations. 

Individuals and teams from not-for-profit and commercial organisations can apply.



You can work in any scientific discipline, including a discipline outside life sciences. You can work on any type of technology. Examples of technologies include:

  • therapeutics (small molecules or biologics)
  • vaccines
  • devices
  • diagnostics
  • regenerative medicine.

The work that you propose must be essential for developing your healthcare innovation (Source:  Wellcome).
Full details available from Wellcome