NHS frontline services, capital funding
© Pcphotography69

Today (5 August) PM Johnson announces £1.8 billion for NHS frontline services: But where will it go, what will it do and where did it come from?

Visiting a Lincolnshire hospital today, Boris Johnson will announce the 20 hospitals set to share £850 million of new funding to upgrade outdated facilities and equipment. Later this week, the Health Secretary will also set out further changes to the NHS pension scheme to support senior doctors and GPs taking on extra shifts.

Which hospitals will be affected?

The 20 hospitals set to be upgraded, at a cost of £850 million, include:

East of England

  • Luton & Dunstable University Hospital NHS FT – £99.5 million for a new block in Luton to provide critical and intensive care, as well as a delivery suite and operating theatres.
  • Norfolk & Norwich University Hospitals NHS FT – £69.7 million to provide Diagnostic and Assessment Centres in Norwich, Great Yarmouth and Kings Lynn to aid rapid diagnosis and assessment of cancer and non-cancerous disease.
  • Norfolk and Suffolk NHS FT – £40 million to build 4 new hospital wards in Norwich, providing 80 beds.
  • NHS South Norfolk CCG – £25.2 million to develop and improve primary care services in South Norfolk.


  • University Hospitals Birmingham – £97.1 million to provide a new purpose-built hospital facility in Birmingham, replacing outdated outpatient, treatment and diagnostic accommodation.
  • United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust – £21.3 million to improve patient flow in Boston by developing urgent and emergency care zones in A&E.
  • Wye Valley NHS Trust – £23.6 million to provide new hospital wards in Hereford, providing 72 beds. University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust – £17.6 million to create 3 new modern wards to improve capacity and patient flow in Stoke, delivering approximately 84 beds for this winter.


  • Barking, Havering and Redbridge CCGs and North East London NHS Foundation Trust – £17 million to develop a new health and wellbeing hub in North East London.
  • Croydon Health Services NHS Trust – £12.7 million to extend and refurbish critical care units at the Croydon University Hospital, Croydon.

North East and Yorkshire

  • South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Integrated Care System – £57.5 million for primary Care investment across South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw.
  • The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – £41.7 million to improve Paediatric Cardiac Services in the North East.
  • Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust – £12 million to provide a single Laboratory Information Management System across West Yorkshire and Harrogate, covering all pathology disciplines.

North West

  • Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust – £72.3 million to build a new adult mental health inpatient unit in Manchester.
  • Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust – £33 million to provide a new 40-bed low secure unit for people with learning disabilities.
  • Stockport NHS FT – £30.6 million to provide a new Emergency Care Campus Development at Stepping Hill Hospital in Stockport, incorporating an Urgent Treatment Centre, GP assessment unit and Planned Investigation Unit.
  • NHS Wirral CCG – £18 million to improve patient flow in Wirral by improving access via the Urgent Treatment Centre.
  • Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust – £16.3 million to provide Emergency and urgent care facilities at Tameside General Hospital in Ashton-under-Lyne.

South East

  • Isle of Wight NHS Trust – £48 million to redesign acute services for Isle of Wight residents.

South West

  • Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust – £99.9 million to build a new Women’s and Children’s Hospital in the centre of the Royal Cornwall Hospital site in Truro.

Chief Executive of NHS England Simon Stevens said:

“This is a significant start to the much-needed capital investment so that our nurses, doctors and other NHS staff will be able to care for their patients in modern facilities with state of the art equipment.

“The concrete steps being set out this week will mean investment flows directly to frontline services, providing new clinics and wards. As they come online, as part of our NHS Long Term Plan, patients will benefit from reduced waits for treatment and wider upgrades to the quality of care the health service is able to offer.”

Where did it come from?

Labour’s Shadow Health secretary elaborates on Stevens’ description of ‘much needed’, suggesting that this money was already owed to the NHS:

Sally Gainsbury, senior political analyst at Nuffield Trust, further delves into the origin of the “new money” announced by PM Johnson.

What money was previously cut from the NHS?

Labour is revealed on the 2nd August, that £4.29 billion has been cut from capital budgets, as part of deliberate smash and grab raids to prop up the day-to-day running of the NHS since 2014.

Capital funding is used to repair NHS facilities, buy new equipment, invest in IT and build premises.

Yet Labour recently revealed 76 hospital Trusts in England had incidents occurring at their Trust due to estates and infrastructures failures in 2018/19. These problems included sewage and water leaking onto hospital wards, broken lifts and ceilings collapsing.

Just last month fire services warned four NHS Trusts they may shut down parts of their hospitals, due to their decrepit state posing a threat to patients and staff.

Labour’s Shadow Health and Social Care Secretary, Jonathan Ashworth MP, warned the Prime Minister that any pledge to clear the £6 billion maintenance backlog must include urgently halting capital to revenue transfers.

The cost of eradicating ‘high risk’ backlog maintenance rose from £947 million in 2016/17 to more than £1 billion in 2017/18, with the ‘significant risk’ backlog at £3 billion. The total backlog increased from £5.5 billion in 2016/17 to almost £6 billion in 2017/18.

Responding to Labour’s new research, Jonathan Ashworth MP, Labour’s Shadow Health and Social Care Secretary, said:

“Tory smash and grab raids on NHS capital budgets have now meant over £4 billion cuts leaving our hospitals crumbling with ceilings falling in, sewage pipes bursting and diagnostic waiting times the worst in a decade.

“Hospitals are now struggling with a repair bill spiralling out of control at a staggering £6 billion, with patients forced to wait longer for life-saving treatment.

“The backlog designated high risk and significant risk stands at over £3 billion while the overall capital budget today is less than it was in 2010 in real terms. This is clear proof Tory cuts are putting patient safety seriously at risk.

“In the week it’s been revealed that Matt Hancock has delivered less than 3% of previous Tory promises on capital investment no one will trust what Boris Johnson says unless it is backed up by a clear costed plan to give our NHS the capital investment patients deserve and an end to these disastrous smash and grab raids.”

Ahead of his Lincolnshire hospital visit today, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:

“The NHS is always there for us – free at the point of use for everyone in the country.

“With our doctors and nurses working tirelessly day in day out, this treasured institution truly showcases the very best of Britain.

“That’s why I made it my immediate task to make sure frontline services have the funding they need, to make a real difference to the lives of NHS staff, and above all, of patients.”


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