Increase in number of PMI members treated at NHS hospitals possible

Almost half of foundation trust revenue could come from private sources

NHS hospitals will be able to earn almost half of their income from private sources from October.

The decision by Health Secretary Andrew Lansley means that 49% of foundation trusts’ revenue will be able to come from sources such as treating patients with private medical insurance and those who choose to ‘self-pay’ for operations and other procedures.

Critics say that the decision – outlined in the health and social care bill – marks the privatisation of the health service.

But according to the Financial Times, the Health Secretary believes that the cap “prevents foundation trusts from pursuing the kind of innovations that will both benefit patients in the future, and put more of our hospitals on the map internationally as world leaders in their field.”

The cap covers not only private patients but also income from innovations including research, joint ventures and the sale of drugs to customers in the UK and abroad, the FT said.

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