Chris Ham reviews the week's health care news

Publication:  The Guardian
Reference:  Friday 23 May 2014

Two themes caught my eye in this week's news. The first was debate about NHS funding. Andrew Grice in the Independent on Saturday picked up on our work at The King's Fund to highlight the growing financial pressures in the NHS, compounded by the transfer of NHS money into the Better Care Fund.

Grice noted the 'inconvenient truth' that efficiency savings on their own will not be sufficient to deal with these pressures. Extra cash will be needed but politicians seem unwilling to accept this – at least in public.

Grice's story was followed on Sunday with a story in the Observer that the Conservatives have been talking to Labour's Frank Field about ways of raising extra cash. This includes raising National Insurance contributions, learning from the approach used by Tony Blair and Gordon Brown a decade ago to increase NHS funding.

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