NHS bosses in South Yorkshire have splashed out more than £1.6 million in redundancy pay-offs to reorganise services in the county.
The figure, for Sheffield, Rotherham, Barnsley and Doncaster, has been revealed to Don Valley MP Caroline Flint in a letter from health secretary Andrew Lansley - and she fears the sum many be even higher.
The letter also reveals the figure in her own area of Doncaster is more than £250,000.
Mrs Flint said: “I firmly believe the Government’s figures are seriously out of date. Doncaster’s PCT has already lost one third of its staff - over 100 posts - so this figure of £251,000 looks to be well under the actual cost.
“At a time when waiting lists are creeping up and A&E departments are full, how many operations and treatments could be provided for £1.65 million?
“This is money wasted on a re-organisation no-one wants which offers no benefits for patient care.
“The Government has caused unnecessary upheaval, forcing our local Primary Care Trust to pay off one third of staff, only for another NHS body to employ them again.”
One month after taking redundancy, staff may take up new jobs within the NHS.
Under the planned reorganisation of the NHS, GPs will be handed the bulk of the health budget to buy in services for patients, with a new NHS commissioning board overseeing the process.
PCTs are being streamlined into ‘clusters’ as part of the transition, with the aim of getting them to work with GP practices and emerging ‘GP consortia’.