Letter: Mersey waiting lists

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The Independent Online
Sir: Gwyneth Dunwoody, MP for Crewe and Nantwich, makes a connection between waiting-list initiatives in the Mersey Region and a budget deficit at the Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Trust (Letters, 7 January). I must point out that the two are not connected.

It is true that we have top-sliced pounds 2.8m from our District Health Authorities for waiting-list initiatives. That is a tiny fraction of the pounds 1.4bn we invest in health care within Merseyside and Cheshire each year.

Simple arithmetic suggests that had we not top-sliced the pounds 2.8m, the Mid Cheshire Hospitals Trust would have received a maximum of pounds 200,000 in additional funding this year.

In reality, Mid Cheshire received more than pounds 500,000 of waiting-list initiative moneys, so they have gained more than twice what would have been possible under the Dunwoody formula for allocating funding.

Yours faithfully,

HUGH LAMONT

Public Relations Manager

Mersey Regional

Health Authority

Liverpool

7 January

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