Poll: Health workers cast verdict on parties' NHS pledges

New poll of health workers by Dods Research finds Labour most trusted on NHS, but there is doubt over the main parties' policy pledges

By Josh May

05 May 2015

Labour is most trusted by health workers to support the NHS over the next parliament, but staff are sceptical that one of Ed Miliband’s key pledges could be implemented.

A Dods Research poll of 2,000 health service workers across the UK found that 29% believed Labour’s policies would most benefit their work, compared to 18% for the Conservatives, 6% for the Liberal Democrats, 5% for the Greens and 3% for Ukip. Thirty percent said they did not know or would prefer not to say.

In Scotland, however, the SNP led with the support of almost a third of respondents, compared to 22% for Labour.

Two of Labour’s key pledges on healthcare – capping the profits of private firms carrying out work for the NHS and introducing a right to see a GP within 48 hours – were considered either desirable or very desirable by 79% of workers.

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The Conservative plan to give people the right to see a named GP was also given support, with 49% in favour compared to 19% opposed, and Ukip’s plan to put GPs in A&E units was backed by 60%. The workability of the reforms was questioned, however.

Labour’s profit cap plan was deemed the easiest to implement, but the policies for a named GP, 48-hour target and placing GPs in A&E all had majorities who said it would be difficult or very difficult to make happen.

Those polled were also sceptical about parties’ pledges to further integrate health and social care. Only 16% were confident or very confident that the two areas could work better together.

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