Public and political views on the NHS in the run up to the General Election

The King's Fund, London W1G 0AN
Event type: 

About this event

About this event

2014 sees the public sector gearing itself up for election year; using our analysis of the 2013 British Social Attitudes survey we will set the scene of where the public lies on NHS opinion in the run-up to the next election. We will hear from The King's Fund's Chief Economist, John Appleby and Health Policy Fellow, Ruth Robertson, on their findings and analysis of the survey data.

We will then hear from Polly Toynbee on her perspective about the following in the lead-up to the next general election:

  • political headlines that may impact on health 
  • what will the health climate be like?
  • what questions will the press be asking?


John Appleby

Chief Economist, The King's Fund

John Appleby has been Chief Economist at The King's Fund since 1998. He has worked in the National Health Service, in Birmingham and London, and as senior lecturer at the universities of Birmingham and East Anglia.

John has published widely on a range of health care, finance and economic issues in books, academic journals, reports, magazines and newspapers. He contributes regularly to the British Medical Journal on economic issues. John has also acted as an adviser to the UK government and parliament in various capacities.

As well as his post at The King’s Fund, John is a visiting professor at the Department of Economics at City University, where he teaches and carries out research with colleagues in the City Health Economics Centre.

Ruth Robertson

Ruth Robertson is a Fellow in Health Policy at The King's Fund. She returned to the Fund in September 2013, after three years spent researching health insurance coverage issues at the Commonwealth Fund in New York. Her current work includes a national evaluation of clinical commissioning groups, undertaken jointly with the Nuffield Trust, and research support for the Commission on the Future of Health and Social Care in England.

Ruth previously worked at The King's Fund from 2006 to 2010, completing national evaluations of two of Labour's major health system reforms: practice-based commissioning and patient choice policy. She was previously an analyst at the Healthcare Commission (the predecessor to the Care Quality Commission).

Polly Toynbee

Polly Toynbee is a Guardian columnist. She was formerly BBC social affairs editor, columnist and associate editor of the Independent, co-editor of the Washington Monthly and a reporter and feature writer for the Observer.

She has written several books:

  • Hard work: life in low-pay Britain (2003)
  • Lost children: story of adopted children searching for their mothers (1985)
  • The way we live now (1981)
  • Hospital (1977)
  • A working life (1970)
  • Leftovers (1969)

She co-authored, with David Walker, Better or worse? Has Labour delivered? (2005), and Dogma and disarray – Cameron at half-time (2012).