Dissatisfaction with NHS has seen the biggest rise in 30 years amid growing concern about GP and hospital waiting times, a major survey has found. The British Social Attitudes survey shows that dissatisfaction with the NHS rose by 8 per cent to 23 per cent in one year, the largest single-year increase since 1986. The survey published by the King’s Fund found that GPs had the worst rating since the survey was first carried out in 1983. The poll found that waiting times for GP and hospital appointments were the greatest drivers of dissatisfaction, with lack of staff and under-funding cited as other factors.
Heidi Alexander, the Labour Shadow Health Secretary, has responded by saying - ” The reality is that five years of a Tory government have left the NHS understaffed, underfunded and unable to cope”.
Meanwhile reports in the press accuse Jeremy Hunt of vetoing a deal that could have ended the junior doctor dispute. The proposal, it is claimed, was supported by the NHS’ and the Department of Health’s own negotiators. The reports claim that the deal, which is said to have addressed pay for working evenings and Saturdays and was cost neutral for the government, was unilaterally blocked by Mr Hunt despite negotiators from the NHS Employers organisation viewing it as an opportunity to resolve the dispute.