NHS England has signed a three-month deal with 10 private healthcare organisations, including Spire and Nuffield Health, to provide additional support in the face of rising staff absenteeism and the spread of the Omicron variant of coronavirus.
In a statement, Spire said it would work with other independent providers to reduce pressure on England’s hospitals by treating NHS-selective patients and providing emergency cancer work.
The independent healthcare organisation said it would allow NHS England “to use 100% of its facilities and teams locally, regionally or nationally” if there was a surge in Covid-19 patients.
The spread of the Omicron variant has put pressure on England’s NHS.
Last week, 17 hospitals in Manchester announced the cancellation of non-critical surgeries.
Deals with private healthcare providers will begin on Monday and expire on March 31.