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NHS Wales consultant explains why healthcare system is on verge of collapse

The NHS is on the verge of collapse due to demand for healthcare rising significantly faster than funding levels, a consultant has warned. Peter Neville, a consultant for NHS Wales, took to social media to explain why, in his view, the system is failing.

The consultant physician, who has been working in the NHS in Yorkshire and Wales for 32 years, set out the challenges facing the health service in a Twitter thread. He said he had experienced the NHS at its best, in 2008, and its worst, in 2022.

He wrote: "Over at least the past 15 years, we have seen a relentless increase in demand, both in primary care and in hospital care. This has been absolutely predictable by social statisticians for decades and is based on the fact that our elderly are surviving much longer.

"Our elderly use a very large percentage of NHS of resources, unsurprisingly because they are more prone to disease, frailty, and dementia. They need more social care and hospital care as they get older. And they are living longer. (Immigrants, by the way, use much less care).

"Over this period NHS funding has, broadly speaking, risen about 1-2% over inflation. If NHS funding increases with inflation yet demand increases, then clearly spend per person will drop. Demand has increased considerably above 2%, which is why the NHS is failing to manage it."

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Source: Wales Online, 3 January 2023


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