But the organisation – which ended its first year £9.9m in deficit and required a supplementary funding vote from Tynwald to cover the shortfall – aays it remains committed to achieving a balanced budget over the next year and beyond.
In it first annual report, Manx Care sets out the improvements it has made towards ambitious targets it had set as a new independent health and social care provider operating at arm’s length from government.
But it says it always accepted it will take longer to fully achieve all of the recommendations from Sir Jonathan Michael’s independent review.
Manx Care began life in April last year in an unprecedented situation – another lockdown, with a large number of Covid-positive patients in Noble’s Hospital who required round-the-clock care, and with a significant amount of its workforce off sick themselves or having to look after their families at home.
Chairman Andrew Foster said: ‘Our colleagues should be congratulated on their collective achievements in the face of such adversity.
‘Next year will be different but also challenging as we continue to strive to innovate and to provide a more joined-up, integrated health and social care system for the Isle of Man.’
Manx Care ended the year under review, having sought £10m of additional funding from Treasury in order to support expenditure on items where costs were difficult to predict or influence such as rising drug prices, high-cost patients and the cost of managing Covid.
‘A huge amount of work has been done to understand expenditure and manage costs across the organisation,’ notes chief executive officer Teresa Cope.
The organisation began the year with the whole of its £4.5m contingency fund allocated to cover inherited funding pressures.
Manx Care said it was ‘disappointing‘ that cost savings of £1.7m fell short of the target of £2.7m.
The annual report states: ‘The outlook for 2022-23 remains challenging as Manx Care continues to invest in core functions and faces inflationary and other cost pressures.
‘However, the organisation remains committed to achieving financial balance during the next financial year and beyond.’
One area where Manx Care made the headlines for all the wrong reasons was for failings in its handling of personal data.
The organisation was fined £170,500 by the Information Commissioner following seven significant information governance and data security breaches where identifiable patient information was shared with a number of groups, many of whom were not involved with that patient and their care.
These were reported to the Information Commissioner’s Office which resulted in enforcement action being taken.
Among important developments during the year included extra funding for cancer care which has allowed a second consultant breast radiologist to be employed and the number of colposcopy clinics in gynaecology increased.
Manx Care has also invested in additional nursing posts in its oncology service so is able to provide timely chemotherapy to patients.
In July 2021, Manx Care was awarded £1.86m of Treasury funding to begin to address the lengthy waiting lists it inherited, which were further exacerbated by Covid-19.
By February 2022, the endoscopy waiting list of around 450 people had been cleared thanks to an in-house initiative.
Since then, 350 patients have had their cataract pre-assessments and 150 have had their surgery thanks to a partnership with Synaptik.