Expenditure on catering in the health service will have risen by 37 per cent by the end of the year, the Oireachtas Health Committee will hear this Tuesday morning.

As internal Government rows over the cost of running the health service continue, the Department of Health’s Secretary General Robert Watt will tell TDs and Senators that he accepts that "control of expenditure" needs to improve.

It is expected that the health service will exceed its budget by €1.5bn this year.

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In his opening statement, Mr Watt will outline that when staff costs and medicines are taken out of consideration, expenditure will be €573m more than forecast.

It is expected that there will be an 18 per cent increase in heat power and light to the end of the year.

There will also be a 37 per cent increase in the cost of catering, a 28 per cent increase in laboratory costs and a 27 per cent increase in the cost of X-ray and imaging.

Since 2016 the pay bill has increased by €3.2bn, politicians will be told.

Mr Watt will say: "We accept that the forecasts of health expenditure need to improve as does control of expenditure.

"We are responding to this challenge by improving our use of data, our analytical capacity, our performance oversight and corporate governance."

He will also say that there has been an "effective doubling in spend over the last eight years" and argue that "this is a more significant investment than most other developed countries".

Mr Watt will also say that an additional 178,000 people have been treated so far this year compared to 2022.

He will explain that there has been a "substantial divergence between resourcing and activity".

This is due to poor physical infrastructure due to previous under-investment, lack of IT investment and low capital per person employed, weak processes and outdated pathways and "inadequate consultant-led leadership including an outdated contract".

The HSE’s CEO Bernard Gloster, meanwhile, will say that he has made it clear that he does not believe the Budget 2024 health service allocation goes far enough.

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