A massive 73 per cent of the general public do not believe that there has been any improvement in NHS Services over the last five years - new research published today shows.
The 'National Health Report', a quarterly review of the UK publics and patients' opinions on healthcare, GP and NHS services, produced by Health Squared Communications in partnership with Opinion Health, also examined peoples' biggest fears when using NHS hospitals. When asked what their biggest concern was in regard to treatment in NHS hospitals, nearly half said it was contracting MRSA. This fear is worse amongst those aged 55 years and over. Almost six in ten said hygiene and cleanliness was average or not good. Only 9 per cent of respondents have no concern regarding treatment in NHS hospitals.
It's not all bad news though; over 65 per cent thought the professionalism of NHS staff they interacted with was good. This was echoed in the friendliness of staff with over 70 per cent rating friendliness as good.
Asked if NHS services had improved over the past five years, only 21 per cent believed that they had. When asked about the role of the private sector in providing healthcare, 32 per cent believed there should be more involvement. One in ten said the private sector should totally withdraw, and only 14 per cent called for a reduced role.
Andrew Wigmore, Managing Director of Health Squared, commented: "When we commissioned this report we had no idea about the strength of feeling about the NHS's current plight. However, all was not bad as far as GP services were concerned, with 75 per cent of those we surveyed happy with the service. We hope that our reports will prove useful as we continue to examine consumer attitudes on the effectiveness of the NHS and the major health issues of the day. "
The 'National Health Report' results are based on a sample of around 2300 members of the general public. The survey, commissioned by Health Squared Communications, the specialist health communications consultancy, in partnership with Opinion Health, the online health-focused research company, will provide a regular quarterly monitor of the perceptions, opinions and experiences of the general public, as well as patients' opinions of NHS services. These results will be reported back to stakeholders, the NHS and more importantly the patients themselves.
A full copy of the survey results is available to download from the http://www.healthsquared.co.uk/communications/nationalhealthreport