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Health Authority Budgets

Volume 165: debated on Friday 19 January 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health what statutory powers regional health authorities have to ensure that district health authorities do not exceed their budgets; and whether it is his intention to extend this power to FPSA spending as well.

Under section 97 of the National Health Service Act 1977, as amended, it is the duty of each regional health authority to allocate money to its districts and under section 97A each district health authority has a duty to ensure that its expenditure does not exceed its allocation.The Secretary of State makes allocations to family practitioner committees for their administrative expenditure and, from 1 April 1990, will make allocations for cash-limited expenditure on direct reimbursement of part of general medical practitioners' practice expenses. The National Health Service and Community Care Bill presently before Parliament contains provisions to transfer this task to regional health authorities. As with district health authorities, it is the duty of each family practitioner committee to ensure that its expenditure does not exceed the amount allocated.