The Government has asked NHS managers to identify land that can be sold off to raise funds for the health service.
As part of an overall drive to make the NHS more efficient whilst protecting frontline services, it has been suggested that the sale of land could be worth £2.5 billion over the next five years, the equivalent of 50,000 nurses.
The NHS is one of the largest owners of public-sector land and, according to the department, almost 8% of NHS space is under-used. As a result, the sale of this land is being seen as an excellent means of making the NHS more cost-efficient and comes after the Government announced that it wanted to release enough public land to build up to 100,000 new homes by 2015.
Health minister Simon Burns said: "If we want to modernise the NHS and make it more efficient, then we need to be proactive and identify land that is no longer used or needed. Any money raised from surplus land will be used to benefit patients. We are increasing investment in the NHS by GBP12.5 billion, but faced with an ageing population and rising costs of treatments, the NHS needs to be smarter with its resources."
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