Re: The steady crisis across the NHS

Agreement: 
I Agree
Body: 

Dear Editor

This article correctly identifies undercapacity as the underlying cause of NHS poor performance. Staff are working very hard but face a cruel lack of resources. As a result they become stressed and burnt out and threaten to strike.

However it is unlikley that the service lacks suffucient funding. In 2021 the government spent about 45% of it’s expenditure on healthcare. OECD defined private and public provided “Healthcare” (which includes some elements that we traditionally define as social care) absorbed about 12% of our GDP.

The number of hospital beds in the UK has halved in the past 30 years and this expenditure now only provides 1 hospital bed for about 400 people or 2.5 beds per 1000.

Germany spends a similar proportion of GDP on health (12.5%) but manages to pay for only one bed for every 130 people or 8 beds per 1000.

What on earth is going on?

https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/healthandsocialcare/…

No competing Interests: 
Yes
The following competing Interests: 
Electronic Publication Date: 
Tuesday, November 15, 2022 – 12:54
Highwire Comment Subject: 
Workflow State: 
Released
Full Title: 

Re: The steady crisis across the NHS

Highwire Comment Response to: 
Check this box if you would like your letter to appear anonymously:: 
Last Name: 
Dudleston
First name and middle initial: 
Keith E
Address: 
Devon, UK
Occupation: 
Retired
Affiliation: 
None
BMJ: Additional Article Info: 
Rapid response

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