Finance report declares health and social underspend

Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership.
Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership HSCP

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Argyll and Bute’s health and social care watchdog has ended the financial year more than £1 million in the black – despite a forecast underspend being almost halved.

A report has revealed the area’s health and social care partnership (HSCP) finished the 2020/21 financial year with an underspend of £1.089m.

The figure had been forecast to be £2.016m in a report at the end of March due to staffing matters.

Nonetheless, health services, which are provided by NHS Highland, ended the year with an underspend of £906,000.

Social work services, which are provided by Argyll and Bute Council, also had an underspend for the year of £183,000.

The details were discussed at a virtual meeting of the HSCP’s integration joint board (IJB) on Wednesday June 16.

Head of finance and transformation Judy Orr said: ‘The forecast outturn position as at the end of February, reported to the IJB on March 31 2021, was a forecast underspend of £2.016m, made up of an underspend of £1.721m for health-related services and £295,000 for social work related services.

‘The final year end position is an underspend of £1.089m, made up of an underspend of £183,000 for health-related services and £906,000 for social work-related services.

‘This final position is a deterioration of £927,000 in the month which relates wholly to the need to make a year-end provision of £787,000 for annual leave and £862,000 for a job evaluation claim for hospital ward-based health care assistants being regraded from Band 2 to Band 3 going back to 2018.

‘Without this, the position would have improved by £722,000 mainly due to improvement in the social work position.

‘The improvement in social work is mainly on older people. Underspends are mainly due to high levels of vacancies.

‘The overspends are mainly on learning disability joint residential and supported living  and physical disability residential and supported living arising due to service demand and a failure to deliver planned savings.

‘However, the undelivered savings have been covered by support from the Scottish Government, as has loss of income.’