NHS reserves may be used

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NHS managers could have to dip into emergency funds to cover a spend on Northamptonshire hospital patients of almost £19 million more than expected.

Figures show A&E consultations and subsequent stays on wards, as well as unconnected follow-up appointments, have all seen thousands more cases than health bosses expected.

An NHS Northamptonshire spokeswoman said the trust had saved money this year in other areas, such as medicines prescribing.

The trust also had a £10m contingency fund that could be used to help balance the books.