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UK Allocates Extra $2.2Bln to Modernize Hospitals, Healthcare System

LONDON - UK government allocates an additional one-time funding of 1.8 billion pounds ($2.2 billion) to modernize hospitals and the National Health Service (NHS), the office of the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Sunday.

These funds will be used to modernize about 20 hospitals. In addition, capital expenditures on the health system as a whole will be increased, the prime minister's office noted. More than a billion pounds of the newly announced funding will be spent in the current fiscal year, it added.

Additional funding is above 33.9 billion pounds allocated annually from the NHS budget in accordance with a long-term program approved last year.

The news comes almost a week after UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid has announced that additional 2.1 billion pounds ($2.5 billion) were earmarked to prepare the country for a no-deal Brexit.

Meanwhile, London has already allocated 6.3 billion pounds for Brexit preparations, including 4.2 billion made available this financial year.

In his first speech as prime minister, Boris Johnson vowed to leave the European Union by the 31 October deadline. He also added that while London would work to secure a new and "better" deal with Brussels, preparations for a potential no-deal Brexit would be necessary if "Brussels refuses any further to negotiate".