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Public increasingly satisfied with NHS

Public satisfaction with the NHS is now at the third highest level since records began, according to a survey released today (3 April 2013). 

Satisfaction with the way the NHS runs now stands at 61% following a record fall from 70% in 2010 to 58% in 2011, when the survey British Social Attitudes Survey coincided with the first year in a four year NHS spending squeeze. 

The 2012 findings suggest that public concern about these issues may have levelled off.

The survey also measured satisfaction with individual services. 

Satisfaction with GP services is unchanged at 74%. 

Satisfaction with A&E services increased from 54 to 59% while satisfaction with outpatient services (64%) and inpatient services (52%) showed no real change from 2011.

In contrast to the high levels of satisfaction with the NHS, satisfaction with social care services was much lower, at only 30%.

“The British Social Attitudes survey has provided an important barometer of how the public views the NHS since 1983,” said John Appleby, Chief Economist at The King's Fund, who published the report. 

He added: “With no real change in satisfaction with the NHS in 2012, this suggests the record fall in 2011 was not a blip and that the ground lost may take some time to recover.” 

The survey was undertaken by NatCen Social Research, with the majority of interviews taking place between July and September 2012. 

More than 1,100 interviews were carried out face-to-face with a random sample of adults. The data is weighted to ensure it is representative of the general population.