NHS least funded areas in the UK revealed

Published 10th Jul 2024 by Anna Dobbie

A new study has revealed that Wokingham spends the least on public health.

A study analysing 2023 Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) data has determined the local authorities receiving the least NHS funding per resident.

Wokingham comes in first place as £1,777 per capita was spent on the NHS in 2023, as opposed to the national average of £2,263 per capita. Comprised in the Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Integrated Care Board (ICB), Wokingham is the least funded local authority in the country and one of three in the top 10 to belong to the same ICB, the others being Reading and West Berkshire. 

Reading is second, with £1,842.48 spent on the NHS per capita. It is part of the Berkshire, Oxfordshire, and Buckinghamshire ICB; Reading’s total funding amounts to approximately £321,004,235 with a population of 174,224. 

Bath and North East Somerset ranks third by a whisker with £1,864 of NHS funds per capita. Part of the NHS Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire ICB, the area is one of two comprised in this ICB that make the top ten, the other being Swindon in tenth place.

Further down on the list, York comes in fourth place with £1,877 per capita.It is part of the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB.

The top five closes with Bracknell Forest, with NHS funding amounting to £1,889 per capita. Despite being higher than the four positions above, this local authority has seen the lowest amount of total funds in the top 10 at £235,466,109 because of its lower population of 124,607.

On the other side of the list, Blackpool is the local authority with the highest funds per capita spent on the NHS, £3,144.

Islington comes in second with £2,772 per capita. Part of the North Central London ICB, the top five also includes Camden, in fifth place, another local authority part of the same Care Board.

Knowsley and Wirral, comprised of the Cheshire and Merseyside ICB, are in third and fourth place with £2,768 and £2,721 per capita spent on the NHS, respectively.

A spokesperson for online retailer Vape Globe, who conducted the survey, commented on the findings: “The study highlights significant disparities in NHS funding across the UK, with some local authorities receiving less per capita funding than others. This results in certain councils dealing with worse financial positions than average, which has recently forced some to invest in failed commercial dealings. 

“Woking, with the most underfunded NHS, is one of these. The underfunding highlighted in the data sparked a chain reaction in the last few years that made the council declare bankruptcy in 2023, underscoring just how serious this problem is throughout the UK.”

Anna Dobbie

Anna Dobbie

Published 10th Jul 2024


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