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NHS Direct to make major cuts

By Ian Quinn

NHS Direct has revealed plans for major cuts to its workforce, with £8m to be slashed from its management, administrative and service support teams in the next financial year alone.

The nurse-led telephone helpline is proposing savings which are approaching the scale of those it made in 2006, which led to hundreds of job losses and a string of call centre closures.

The trust, which also operates as an out-of-hours triage service and last week closed down the swine flu call centre it ran for the Department of Health, said it had been forced into the measures by DH calls for NHS bodies to cut management costs by 30%.

The decision is likely to please many GPs, with 59% of nearly 900 respondents to Pulse's pre-election survey saying it should be a prime target for cuts.

NHS Direct provides call-handling for many out-of-hours services NHS Direct provides call-handling for many out-of-hours services

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