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Hospital's £3 million deficit - by CLIFF MOGG

HOSPITAL chiefs have warned that Frimley Park is facing a shock £3-million deficit.

HOSPITAL chiefs have warned that Frimley Park is facing a shock £3-million deficit.

They have blamed the crisis on an unexpected drop in income from primary care trusts.

Now a three-year cost cutting plan is being drawn up to deal with the shortfall.

Hospital chief executive Andrew Morris revealed details of the deficit at a recent meeting of the area's community health council.

Jacqui Priddle, the council's chairwoman, said this week: "We haven't yet been given details of how the hospital intends to tackle the problem

"But it has to deliver on its waiting times, and Mr Morris has assured us it will."

Hospital spokesman John Skillicorn-Aston said later that the financial recovery plan had still not been finalised.

He assured the public, however, that every effort would be made to ensure that patient care did not suffer.

Mr Skillicorn-Aston added: "This deficit was not of our creation, it was handed to us by the primary care trusts."

At the beginning of the financial year the trusts, which pay for patient care, had told the hospital how much they intended to spend.

But in September the trusts shot a hole in the hospital's budget by slashing the spending figure.

Mr Skillicorn-Aston was unable to say where the hospital would make the savings.

"It will be a mixed bag approach," he added. "We will be looking to make adjustments in certain areas."


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