Fear over local NHS overspend

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Worries have been raised over health and social care in South Ayrshire after it was revealed it is facing a £4 million black hole.

A rise in the number of vulnerable children and older people requiring care has caused costs to rocket.

The South Ayrshire Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) has predicted it will have a £4 million overspend for the current financial year.

The figures were presented to the Integration Joint Board meeting, which oversees the partnership, last week.

A financial monitoring report said: “There has been an unprecedented rise in the number of young people requiring secure accommodation.”

The report also revealed how the budget made allowances to pay for 879 care home places for older people but 932 were actually needed.

South Ayrshire HSCP director Tim Eltringham said: “The overspend is mainly a result of two main areas of service pressure. Around £2 million is associated with vulnerable children and young people who need high levels of support, often in relatively expensive specialist placements.

“The second area of pressure, again around £2 million, is associated with the demand for care home placements for older people and care packages to help older people stay in their owns homes in the community.”

The HSCP services in the red are those delivered through South Ayrshire Council while the NHS Ayrshire and Arran’s budget is due to break even. A budget recovery plan is being developed and will be presented to the IJB shortly.