THE Trust running Winchester's hospital has received a funding boost from the government to help tackle the pressure on services in winter.

Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Royal Hampshire County Hospital, has been granted more than £1.8m, while the University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust has received more than £2.6m.

Alex Whitfield, chief executive of Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “We are delighted that our system has secured access to more than £1.8m of winter funding money allocated to the NHS in the November 2017 budget.

“£973,000 has been awarded to support existing plans for the winter. These include additional staffing we have already added in our emergency departments and the opening of the Overton Unit at Basingstoke hospital, which provides step down care for patients who no longer require the high level of acute care provided in hospital, but are awaiting a care package that will enable them to return home.

“A further £919,000 has been allocated to three specific initiatives agreed with North Hampshire and West Hampshire CCGs to support patients outside of hospital by avoiding admissions and accelerating discharges to the most appropriate care setting.

“These schemes will come on line over the next few weeks, while it takes time to recruit and deploy staff into roles supporting our urgent care patients, so the full benefits of this additional funding will take time to be seen. However, we are hopeful that these measures, funded in part by these winter monies, will help us to emerge from what is currently a very challenging position.”

The extra funding granted to the Trusts was announced as part of a £337m immediate funding boost for NHS hospitals this winter in the recent Budget, in addition to an extra £2.8bn investment over the next two years.

It comes after operations were being cancelled across Hampshire last week as the local NHS struggled to cope with winter pressures.

Senior managers said they were following advice from the NHS nationally to cut back on non-urgent procedures to help them cope with the spike in people seeking emergency care.