As the General Election approaches, the NHS is in the spotlight. Facts, figures, claims and counter claims are flying back and forth as each party seeks to shore up their position as the party that can be trusted to run the National Health Service.
At times like this, it can be hard to know what to make of the political debate. For example, who is right about what has happened to the NHS budget since 2010? Was this winter really much worse than last winter at A&E? Is the Welsh NHS really as bad as some people make out?
The Nuffield Trust exists to improve the quality of health policy and practice by carrying out research and analysis into these kinds of questions. Our recent analysis has examined, among other things, the state of general practice, how health and social care quality has fared under austerity, what’s behind the A&E ‘crisis’, and how the Welsh NHS compares to the English NHS. And that’s just in the last year.
So, to help journalists, commentators and others interested in the pre-election debate on health, we have compiled some facts and figures from our recent work. As much of our analysis draws on publicly available data, we’ve indicated the sources of the different stats used. We have also added in our own perspectives on some of the big issues facing the NHS and social care. This pack isn’t intended to be comprehensive but instead is a good starting point when thinking about some of the big issues that have cropped up as the election campaign has gone on.
We’ll be adding to this pack as the campaign develops. If you spot things that we have missed, or have any questions about the figures in it, do leave a comment below. And feel free to quote these figures if you’re reporting on the NHS – but do please remember to credit us.
Merry L (2015) 'Facts, figures and views on health and social care: A resource for reporters of the 2015 general election' Nuffield Trust briefing, 14 April 2015. https://www.nuffieldtrust.org.uk/resource/facts-figures-and-views-on-health-and-social-care-a-resource-for-reporters-of-the-2015-general-election