Private firms scoop NHS trust work

THE bulk of National Health Service trusts have a budget for legal services, according to a new survey by The Lawyer.

The study of 100 NHS trusts reveals that 78 per cent have a legal budget, with almost all opting to use private firms rather than in-house lawyers.

The Government's controversial changes to the NHS have also affected the work law firms carry out for trusts.

While medical negligence and personal injury were the predictable first priorities for most of those surveyed, property and employment matters follow close behind.

Law firm commercial departments doing NHS work besides medical negligence and PI are also surveyed, showing Bristol-based practice Bevan Ashford with the highest number of NHS fee earners in the country at 73.