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Health care spending in the UK

Geoff Riley

7th September 2018

Here are some links to the scale and pattern of health-care spending in the UK economy.

Total spending

Total health spending in England was around £125 billion in 2017/18 and was expected to rise to over £127 billion by 2019/20, taking inflation into account. - More here from this article from Full Fact

UK Health Care spending as a percentage of GDP

Total current healthcare expenditure in the UK was 9.8% of gross domestic product (GDP), higher than the median for (OECD) Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development member states but second lowest of the seven nations in the G7, a position which has remained unchanged since UK health accounts were introduced for 2013 - more here from this data release from the UK office of national statistics

Who funds health care in the UK?

Government expenditure accounted for 79.4% of all current UK healthcare expenditure in 2016. Much of the remainder is financed by voluntary and compulsory health insurance schemes.

What is happening to the cost of long-term health care?

This include caring for those with chronic long term health problems.

According to the ONS (2018), "Total long-term care expenditure in 2016 was £46.4 billion, with a growth rate of 5.0%. Demographic changes in the UK, such as an ageing and expanding population has led to an increase in the number of people with complex social care and healthcare needs."


NHS spending - an update (April 2018)

NHS funding: where will the money come from and how will it be spent? (Guardian, June 2018)

Some excellent charts here from the BBC

10 charts that show why the NHS is in trouble

Data on the scale of NHS waiting lists

UK Ranks Second Best in Affordable Health Care

Geoff Riley

Geoff Riley FRSA has been teaching Economics for over thirty years. He has over twenty years experience as Head of Economics at leading schools. He writes extensively and is a contributor and presenter on CPD conferences in the UK and overseas.

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