Friday, 29th October 2021

Budget 2021 – Dave Middleton AMII Chairman reaction: More incentives needed for NHS and private sector to work together to tackle health crisis

Overall the Chancellor could have introduced private health insurance subsidies to help tackle the current healthcare crisis.

I welcome the extra £5.9bn for the NHS in England announced in the Autumn Budget to help tackle the record backlog of people waiting for tests, scans and treatment, which has been worsened by the pandemic.

More than five million people are waiting for NHS hospital treatment in England, with hundreds of thousands waiting more than a year.

The £5.9bn, which will be spent on diagnostic tests, elective care and digital technology, is on top of the £12bn a year that was announced in September.

I am delighted to see the Chancellor is injecting much-needed resources into tackling record-breaking NHS waiting lists but there is much more he could have done to incentivise the NHS and private healthcare sector to work together.

The measures he has announced are unlikely to solve the unprecedented issues facing the Health Service and, while subsidised private health insurance would, without doubt, reduce the burden on the NHS, it is a real shame that there seems to be no appetite within Government to consider this

AMII campaigned against any increase in the Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) and Middleton expressed relief that Chancellor Rishi Sunak did not increase IPT but pledged the Association would continue to lobby for lower rated healthcare products.

We will continue to lobby hard that healthcare costs should be zero rated for IPT purposes in line with other protection and general products, as they make an equally valuable contribution to the health of the nation and the UK economy