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Public concern over NHS rises sharply ahead of general election, poll finds


5 June 2017

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One in six people believe the NHS is one of the biggest issues facing the country, according to the latest issues index from Ipsos Mori.

Less than a week before the general election, poll data has revealed that 61% of Britons are concerned about the NHS – 13 percentage points higher than a month ago.

The survey of 997 people was carried out between May 5 and May 15, before NHS computers were hacked and before the terrorist attacks in Manchester and London.

One in six people believe the NHS is one of the biggest issues facing the country, according to the latest issues index from Ipsos Mori.

Less than a week before the general election, poll data has revealed that 61% of Britons are concerned about the NHS – 13 percentage points higher than a month ago.

The survey of 997 people was carried out between May 5 and May 15, before NHS computers were hacked and before the terrorist attacks in Manchester and London.

The level of concern is at its highest since since April 2002, and 16 percentage points higher than the 45% who said the same about Brexit this month.

Education is now seen as the third most important issue, on 27% – on a similar level with immigration at 25% and ahead of the economy at 20%.

Dan Wellings, senior policy fellow at The King’s Fund, said the Brexit-dominated campaign has led many political commentators to lean away from the NHS as a decisive factor in the election.

But he said: ‘The warnings around inadequate NHS funding have been growing in number and volume over the past few years and now seem to be cutting through with the public in a significant way.’

He added: ‘However, such high levels of public concern do suggest that the NHS will need to be a high priority for the incoming government.’

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