“Inadequate NHS funding continues to be stretched too thinly so it is frontline staff wages and vital services such as scientific research that we see consistently sacrificed in order to maintain the service.”
Bureaucracy biggest drain on NHS funding, say taxpayers
Almost half (48%) of UK taxpayers believe that poor management, internal bureaucracy and wastage arethe biggest drains on funding and care provision in the NHS, research has found.
The study, by the Independent Health Professionals’ Association (IHPA), comes amongst reports that the NHS funding deficit could be twice as high as expected this year, prompting calls for both budgets and efficiencies within the service to be reviewed and increased.
A further 30% of people claiming that patients using the NHS when they don’t need treatment are crippling the service. Meanwhile, just 4% of people think that research into treatment for disease is contributing to the funding crisis, with only 0.5% of people stating that staffing costs are a drain on the service.
A further 62% of people believe that healthcare professionals working in the NHS are underpaid, with just 6% believing they are overpaid. Two thirds of those surveyed (68%) said they would be happy for workers to receive higher pay if it improves patient safety. What’s more, half (57%) of people said they would stand behind nurses, doctors and other healthcare staff if they protested to improve their pay and working conditions.
Ben Itsuokor, consultant geriatrician and president of the IHPA, said: “Inadequate NHS funding continues to bestretched too thinly so it is frontline staff pay and vital services such as scientific research that we see consistently sacrificed in order to maintain the service.
“As a result, not only are thousands of healthcare professionals chronically underpaid but now more overworked than ever. Even more worrying is that ongoing inefficiencies within the NHS system are eating up any budget that is allocated; limiting the ability to properly reimburse staff for their efforts on a daily basis.
“However, our research shows that a majority of the public both feel supportive about NHS staff taking steps to get fairer pay – and that government measures do not go far enough in addressing the issue.
“It’s time to spend NHS budgets properly; not just pay lip service to an NHS which has been on its knees for some time.”