Top adviser backs Lords calls for longer-term health plans

A TOP health adviser yesterday backed calls for long-term budgets in the health service, following a House of Lords report that warned the UK is “woefully underprepared” for an ageing population.

Andrew Hine, UK head of healthcare at KPMG, told City A.M. the NHS should shift investment from hospitals to technology that allows patients to be cared for at home: “Government funding is generally given in one or three year cycles ... If you have a tech budget for 10 years then you’ll be able to pay back over a decade,” he said. “When our arrangements for pensions were established the majority of people didn’t actually retire and even if they did their life expectancy beyond retirement was short. The way to balance that cost is to enable people to look after themselves at home,” he added.

Yesterday’s House of Lords report estimates that the number of over-65s will double from 10m to 20m by 2030. It suggests a secure decade-long spending plan for the NHS and social care to allow for long-term planning.