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NHS Confederation calls for primary care to receive greater funding share

GP and community services should recieve a higher proportion of NHS spend to enable more care to be carried outside hospital, says the head of the NHS Confederation.

In his New Year’s message, Mike Farrar said he would like to see ‘more investment in primary, community, mental health and social care services as a proportion of the total spend’.

He added: ‘For instance, untreated mental illness costs the NHS over £10billion in physical healthcare costs every year. And delayed transfers in care – often a result of the right support not being in place - currently cost the NHS £545,000 per day (approximately £200 million per year).

‘Increasing money in these areas will help keep people out of hospital and leading independent lives, accessing care in their own homes, or closer to home.’

Mr Farrar also called on clinicians to ‘provide a better explanation of safe and effective cases for change that will improve the quality of local services’ and support ‘courageous politicians who put their population’s health above their own electoral health’.

He added: ‘If we want to ensure that our health service is improving in the long-term, not just running to stand still, then fundamental change is necessary. We should all be concerned about the future of the NHS and we should all be active in finding the best solutions.’