Catching up on the news yesterday (Jan 26) on the BBC website I saw a reference to a comment made in the Sun something like "more money won't solve the NHS problems". So I thought I'd do a few sums.
In the recent past the UK has spent about 9.5% of its GDP on health. This compares with about 11.5% of countries such as Germany and France (and nearly 18% for the US!). So we spend about 2% of GDP less than France/Germany.
The GDP of the UK is about 1.5 trillion pounds, but lets work in billions; ie 1500 billion pounds (BP).
And 2% of 1500 BP is 2x1500/100 which equals 30 billion pounds! Rather puts the Labour Party's promised 2.5 BPs and the Tory's even smaller sum rather in the shade doesn't it?
So: sure; money isn't everything but that extra 30 billion ought to solve a few problems, shouldn't it?
So the most fundamental problem with the NHS is that the political class has failed to persuade the electorate that we can't have a world class health system without paying for it!
Personally, I think that this country needs a progressively graduated hypothecated health tax on income, collected by the Inland Revenue, with the level set annually by an independent body responsible to Parliament. Otherwise, this lack of funding will eventually bring down the NHS and we will have to adopt a more expensive organisational model.