BASILDON Hospital bosses face taking out loans to pay staff salaries.

Latest figures show the hospital is already £5million over its planned end-of-year deficit of £12.2million...and expects to be £9.8million over at the end of the financial year in April.

The hospital is also set to merge with Southend and Mid Essex hospitals in April but together they look set to end the financial year massively exceeding a planned combined £110.6million deficit.

Southend Hospital is currently over its plan by £3.1million - and Mid Essex by £4.7million.

While these two hospitals will not lose any funding, it seems Basildon must extend loans to pay its March wage bill.

A financial report in joint board papers said: “ The financial recovery actions are currently not sufficient to recover the position to the extent that [funding] would be payable and therefore £22.3m will be lost to the trust.

“The consequence of this will require an increase in a cash loan to facilitate ongoing creditor and salary payments in March 2020.

“Due to the critical importance of delivering the £9.8m forecast position, external support has been received to help the organisation with a short, intensive turnaround programme.”

Addressing the joint board, chief executive Clare Panniker said she would like to thank all our staff across the three sites for their continued hard work and dedication to patient care, under “very challenging circumstances”. She added: “I am also grateful to our clinical leaders who, despite these pressures, have kept up their enthusiasm and momentum for service redesign and improvement.

“The financial position of the Mid and South Essex trusts remains challenging.

“There is a particular financial pressure at Basildon Hospital at the present time, which is the focus of concerted efforts by clinical and corporate leaders supported by a dedicated turnaround team.

The joint Finance and Performance Committee said it had ‘noted’ the report but was not assured because of the level of unmitigated risk faced by the trusts and requested further assurance from executives.”

Southend Hospital has come under fire in recent weeks after it was revealed it had failed to pay an agency supplying doctors. It had also failed to pay rent on a base used to run Southend sexual health services and was evicted, claiming it was an oversight.

Dawn Scrafield, Chief Finance Officer for Mid and South Essex University Hospitals Group said: “During this financial year, our three Trusts have plans and processes in place to deliver significant savings, without compromising our excellent standard of care.

“This includes financial improvement plans to save £35.8 million across our hospital group.

“Our priority is to place our hospitals on a firmer financial footing as we move towards a new merged organisation.”