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Fears about NHS spending cuts

29th June 2009

A poll by the British Medial Association has revealed that nine out of ten respondents were worried NHS healthcare would be affected if the government cut spending.

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The survey of 1,000 people showed 75% thought spending on other services should be reduced instead.

40% said they would be willing to pay increased taxes in order to ensure NHS care was not adversely affected.

NHS bosses have said the health service faces a "funding shortfall" of £10 billion in the three years following 2011.

British Medical Association chairman Dr Hamish Meldrum said the poll revealed how worried people were about how the recession affected NHS care.

"While we appreciate that the government needs to steer the country through this difficult economic period, we urge it not do do so at the expense of NHS funding," he said.

"People always need good quality healthcare and it would be a huge mistake to try and make savings by squeezing the NHS." 

The results of the poll also showed that 59% of respondents thought that if the private sector was more involved in the NHS then it could safeguard services.

This view is not held by the BMA, who have warned that the inclusion of the private sector could fragment health service care.

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