Hiring more pen-pushing NHS managers does NOT improve hospital performance, study finds

Hiring more pen-pushing NHS managers does NOT improve hospital performance, study finds

HIRING more pen-pushing NHS managers fails to improve hospital performance, a study shows.

There are some 35,000 managers in the health service — and their value has long been a source of fierce debate.

Now, researchers say the hospitals that have the most do not necessarily provide better care.

The findings are from a London School of Economics study which looked at 129 major hospitals in England between 2012 and 2019.

"It compared manager numbers with how well budgets were controlled and how quickly patients got treated.

On average, the hospital trusts spent nearly £10million a year on managers. Some had more than 500.

Dr Miqdad Asaria, an assistant professor at the LSE, said: “Increasing the numbers of managers does not appear to improve hospital performance.”

Researchers suggested managers may not have enough control to make a difference and simply enforce standards and targets set by senior bosses.

But they said the same was not true in private hospitals — where extra managers did appear to boost patient care.

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