Latest Issue

Speed Data: Will the NHS fall off a cliff this winter?

The General Medical Council has warned a crunch is coming, and polls suggest the public is getting worried. John Appleby of the Nuffield Trust reviews the evidence.

By John Appleby   December 2016

Source: Department of Health, NHS Improvement

Source: Department of Health, NHS Improvement

THE FINANCES: England’s hospitals are rapidly plunging into the red

At the end of the expansionary New Labour days, austerity arrived and the rapid growth of NHS spending slowed to a crawl. But hospitals’ books did not immediately indicate any great distress. For a time, small surpluses suggested they had learned to do more with less. But in 2013/14 the surpluses vanished, and a small average deficit crept in. By last year, this had ballooned to £2.5bn, and the real figure—once we strip out Whitehall’s bailouts,…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect