Bosses at a Warwickshire primary care trust yesterday vowed to "pull out all the stops" in a bid to claw back £10.8 million before the end of March.
Mike Attwood, joint chief executive of Coventry teaching PCT, said every staff vacancy would be scrutinised before being filled over the next three months, with an aim of leaving at least 61 posts open until the next financial year.
Patients could also wait longer for routine operations to give the cash-strapped PCT more time to pay for them.
The decisions form part of a raft of measures outlined in the PCT's recovery plan, endorsed by the trust's board yesterday, to ensure it is not in the red by the end of the financial year.
Measures put in place to control staffing are expected to save around £2 million.
But Mr Attwood stressed the PCT was committed to "not going down the redundancy route". He added that while they were committed to the recovery plan it would work in tandem with safe staffing levels.
"We are looking at all posts, whether manager post or admin or clinical posts. They are all being examined if and when they become vacant and being very tightly controlled," he said.
More difficult to implement was a plan to save £4 million that required the cooperation of other agencies, like local hospitals, he said.
"Wherever we have to work with other agencies it gets more complicated," he said.
"All of our patients who need care will still get care in line with waiting targets, but we can't afford to beat the national target times for operations. We would not want to inadvertently breach the national waiting times either."
Planned building extensions have also been put on hold.
A committee of executive and non-executive directors has been set up to closely monitor the effectiveness of the plan over the coming months.
Mr Attwood said he hoped to re-instate as many of the unfilled staff vacancies as possible in next financial year.
"We are putting plans together to see whether next year's growth will cover all that, or whether some decisions will need to be prioritised," he said.
"We have to concentrate on breaking even at the end of this financial year."