The Chief Executive of the NHS in England, Simon Stevens, has predicted a negative reaction if the government fails to increase funding for health services during the next parliament.
Stevens also called for an end to the ‘boom-bust’ approach.
Stevens told the Financial Times he hoped for more annual funding in addition to the £2bn lifeline that the Chancellor, George Osborne, guaranteed if the Tories succeed at the general election. The Guardian reports.
He stated that a “boom-bust” attitude to funding was “inefficient for taxpayers and bad for patients”.
Stevens went on to tell the paper, “Either we have a thoughtful, sequenced series of annual real funding increases, building on next year’s ‘downpayment’, against which the health service can plan and make the necessary efficiencies, or we have a heavily constrained squeeze”.
With any such restrictions, he added that there would be “some form of public backlash… by the second half of the parliament and then a further spurt of catch-up to compensate for that”.
In October, Stevens outlined a five-year plan which identifies an £8bn-a-year funding gap in the NHS budget. Though, major changes to relieve pressure on staff have been aimed to cut £22bn from annual costs.
Labour have put the NHS at the top of the agenda ahead of the election in May as they launch their campaign.
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