Intended for healthcare professionals


NHS is staring into a financial “abyss” as new levels of rationing emerge, clinicians warn

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 27 November 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g7266
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. 1London

The NHS is reaching new levels of financial trouble, and signs are emerging of dangerous rationing of care, clinicians have warned MPs.

Concerns included deficits in trusts that have always managed to achieve surpluses previously, difficulties in recruiting permanent staff, and restrictions on care for some patients, said witnesses appearing before the parliamentary health committee on 26 November.

During the evidence session for their inquiry into public expenditure on health and social care the committee’s MPs asked if the witnesses recognised the scale of the funding challenges facing the NHS as set out in the Five Year Forward View published by NHS England and other national bodies last month.1 2

Mark Porter, BMA chair, giving evidence, said that this scale was in line with BMA estimates and added, “At present in the NHS, demand …

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