Public support for NHS

New research by the King’s Fund shows public support for the NHS largely unchanged over the past two decades despite economic and political challenges and changes to its structure. The research indicates that 90% of the public agree with the founding principles of the NHS as it approaches its 70th anniversary.

Other findings include:

A clear majority (66 per cent) of adults are willing to pay more of their own taxes to fund the NHS, underlining growing support among the public for tax rises to increase NHS funding.

Sixty-seven per cent think that treatments and services should only be available on the NHS if they are available to everyone and not dependent on where people live, while 31 per cent think that treatments and services should be based on local need.

While some people (29 per cent) say decisions about the availability of treatments and services should be left to qualified health professionals, 56 per cent at least want to be consulted and a minority (14 per cent) want to be actively involved. This underlines the importance of engaging the public and ensuring that service changes are supported and led by clinicians.

Sixty-five per cent believe that keeping healthy is primarily down to the individual, with just 7 per cent placing this responsibility with the NHS.