Your views

Readers panel: Does the way we fund the NHS have to change to avoid bankrupting the state?

A report from the Centre for Policy Studies – A Royal Commission on the NHS: The Remit –argues that the ‘ever-increasing demands of the health service cannot be met from general taxation without bankrupting the state’. Nursing Standard readers have their say

A report from the Centre for Policy Studies – A Royal Commission on the NHS: The Remit –argues that the ‘ever-increasing demands of the health service cannot be met from general taxation without bankrupting the state’. Nursing Standard readers have their say


Picture: iStock

Liz Charalambous is a staff nurse and PhD student in Nottingham
@lizcharalambou

No. The fact we ask this question is testament to the damage done by this government. If the government can spend public funds on a cross-party alliance to stay in power, and bail out the banks, then surely public money can be used to invest in the NHS rather than looking to the ‘free market’? We need to examine our priorities as a society to determine how taxes are spent, and invest in the infrastructure to improve health and create jobs.

 

Daniel Athey is a charge nurse on an acute medical unit in Sheffield 
@danjathey

This feels like a move towards an official way of privatising the NHS without any one person or political party having to actually say it. Privatisation began long ago, with car parks, shops, canteens and domestic services now largely private. Once the idea is widely accepted, the privatisation of healthcare services and facilities will commence. With an official independent report, the government can even sell it as a way of saving the NHS, making it palatable for general consumption.

 

Beverley Ramdeen is a senior nursing lecturer in Hertfordshire 
@BeverleyRamdeen

Yes. Every winter sees the recurring theme of a struggling NHS. This will not change unless a thorough review is carried out looking at the way the health service is funded. The government needs to explore NHS priorities and alternative methods of funding with clear consultation with the public. It would be short-sighted to expect people to pay an NHS tax without assurance that the health service could deliver the services needed, and reassurance that any NHS funding will be ring-fenced.

 

Ewout van Sabben is a third-year children’s nursing student in London

I come from The Netherlands, which has a largely privatised health service, and have seen my parents pay extortionate amounts of money for very little in the end. As a free service, the NHS can easily be misused, and people can become complacent. But having an ‘NHS tax’ won’t solve the long-standing problem that the current system isn’t working. Should those who are able to pay do so for certain services? How do you choose? And how can we make sure the pressures are bearable for those working in the NHS?


Readers panel members give their views in a personal  capacity only

For more information

 

This article is for subscribers only

Jobs