§ Mr. Hammond
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the performance of NHS trusts in complying with Government targets on payment of invoices. 639W
§ Mr. Denham
The Public Sector Payments Policy (PSPP) target is for 95 per cent. of bills to be paid within contract terms or 30 days where no terms have been agreed.
National Health Service performance in paying bills promptly has improved significantly over the last few years. Currently the NHS pays 83 per cent. of its bills within 30 days—85 per cent. if the value of bills is taken into account. This is a significant improvement on the 79 per cent. performance reported in 1997–98.
NHS Executive regional offices monitor closely the PSPP performance of individual NHS trusts and work with poor performing NHS Trusts to improve compliance with the policy.