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After years of austerity, where are hospitals most struggling?

Finance leaders in the NHS have set out a painful list of cost-cutting measures they are having to consider

By Richard Murray  

File photo dated 03/10/14 of a nurse on a ward at a hospital. The number of nurses and midwives leaving the profession has risen by 13% over the last year, prompting fears the NHS is facing "major challenges" to retain staff.

The NHS is now in its eighth year of austerity and it is no surprise that our latest Quarterly Monitoring Report finds it stuck in a Groundhog Day of deficits and slipping financial plans. The risks were always high that a continued malaise on finance would begin to damage patient care (rather than just the Chancellor’s fiscal forecast) and the evidence is that this is indeed happening. But where is the pressure on hospitals greatest? And what must be done to relieve it?

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