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Effectiveness of NI Health Budget allocation examined

3 September 2018

The Northern Ireland Affairs Committee hears from senior executives in the Public Health Agency and Health and Social Care Board, on health funding priorities for the 2018-19 Budget.


Wednesday 5 September in the Thatcher Room, Portcullis House

At 9.30 am

  • Valerie Watts, Chief Executive, Health and Social Care Board and Interim Chief Executive, Public Health Agency
  • Dr Miriam McCarthy, Director of Commissioning, Health and Social Care Board
  • Dr Adrian Mairs, Director of Public Health, Public Health Agency
  • Paul Cummings, Director of Finance, Health and Social Care Board and Public Health Agency

Purpose of the session

The session examines the current state of the health care system in Northern Ireland and identifies pressures on the service. It will investigate the effectiveness of the budget allocations in supporting key services, reducing waiting times for elective care, as well as providing flexibility to address future challenges.

In its inquiry into devolution in Northern Ireland the Committee found that the lack of a functioning Executive was particularly impacting the Health and Social Care service. The session also looks at the ongoing impact this is having and the ways in which important decisions about the HSC can be taken in the absence of a Minister.

The inquiry

In March, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Karen Bradley MP, outlined budget allocations for the Northern Ireland Department of Health for 2018/19. This included funding for immediate and future health pressures, mental health services and infrastructure projects, part of £410m additional spending from the Confidence and Supply agreement. The Secretary of State also allocated £100m for transformation to 'make services sustainable in the long term'.

The inquiry will look into whether funding allocated to the Department of Health will be sufficient to meet the growing pressures on health and social care provision in Northern Ireland. It will also examine how these funds could be used to improve service levels across the Health and Social Care (HSC) service.

Further information

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