Limp NHS productivity and what to do about it – with Anita Charlesworth and Neil Sebire

Episode 43,   Apr 30, 05:01 AM

Improving NHS productivity is a key national priority. But what’s behind the slowdown and can it be reversed? 

Over the past few years, amid the turmoil of COVID-19, the NHS has seen substantial growth in funding and clinical staffing levels. Yet the numbers of patients treated haven’t risen in step – suggesting services, particularly NHS acute hospitals, have become less productive. 

Government has announced a wide-ranging review of public sector productivity and asked services to develop plans to recover productivity performance. At the Spring Budget 2024, £3.4bn in capital funding was announced to support digital and technology projects intended to boost NHS productivity. 

So why have activity levels not been keeping pace with recent increases in NHS funding and staffing, what can be done, and is implementing new technologies a solution worth banking on? 

To discuss, our Chief Executive Jennifer Dixon is joined by:

  • Anita Charlesworth, Chief Economist and Director of the REAL Centre at the Health Foundation.
  • Neil Sebire, Professor of Pathology and Chief Research Information Officer at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust.