Wednesday 8 February 2017 - Follow Up Report

Private Patient Income: Health and Social Services Department Follow-up

Topics: Governance

Departments: Health & Social Services

Sector: Health & Social Care

Report - Private Patient Income HSSD - Follow-up - 09.02.2017

Follow Up Report: pdf (624.43 KB)

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Clinical consultants working in the Health and Social Services Department (HSSD) are permitted to undertake work for privately funded patients if they fulfil their contracted hours for publicly funded work.

In April 2015 the C&AG highlighted key areas where the arrangements for Private Patient Income required improvement. 


This follow up review assesses:

  • the adequacy of the arrangements HSSD has put in place to manage and monitor the implementation of the recommendations made and for evaluating the impact of implementation
  • the extent to which actions HSSD has identified against each recommendation address the improvement areas identified in my report; and
  • the progress HSSD has made in implementing agreed recommendations;

The review did not evaluate the details of proposals to establish a Trading Operation for private patient activity. 

In addition to recommendations the report contains areas for continuing management action relating to more detailed aspects of implementation.


The C&AG found significant improvement in key areas. HSSD has established much firmer foundations on which to manage its private patient business: it has adopted a structured approach to implementing the recommendations, focussing on key weaknesses and aligned with departmental objectives. 

The C&AG particularly welcomes the steps taken to improve the administration of the Private Patients Management Committee and arrangements for charging private patients. But she also recognises that there are areas where progress has been slower:

  • the development of policies and procedures
  • the arrangements for identifying private patient activity and billing for it
  • development of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to allow effective and timely monitoring of performance by management; and
  • monitoring of compliance with policies.


Associate Member of EURORAI - a cooperation project between public sector supervisory bodies in Europe