Healthcare Confidence Index Survey 2016

Date: 21-03-2016

The seventh wave of the Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking Healthcare Confidence Index has been released this week. The research is based on primary healthcare providers' outlook for their businesses.

The latest wave of the Index has indicated that short-term confidence is on the rise across general practice, pharmacy and dental, a positive reflection of what has been a more settled economy across England and Wales.

However, long-term optimism is lower across the board, recognising relative uncertainty as the pace of change continues unabated.

The confidence of GPs has risen slightly over the past 12 months, but the profession is largely pessimistic in light of uncertainty about the potential seven-day NHS and nearly 88 per cent of GPs expect financial pressures to increase over the next five years.

On a positive note it's encouraging to see that 76 per cent of GPs and pharmacists are expecting to work more closely together in the future as integrated healthcare is increasingly seen as necessary.

Pharmacists are supporting a significant surge in confidence thanks to a settled period in the industry and increased integrated working opportunities.

More than half (51 per cent) see primary care reform as an opportunity and 79 per cent of pharmacists are looking to expand their business.

Long-term confidence has dipped slightly however, as the profession faces rising running costs and a cut in funding is expected.

Dentists continue to lead the way in terms of optimism about the overall future prospects of their profession when compared to GPs and pharmacists, perhaps reflecting the fact that their sector benefits from more non-NHS income.

However, the reformed NHS dental contract continues to create uncertainty about adequate funding in the sector with 81 per cent of respondents revealing doubts. Despite these doubts nearly 65 per cent of dentists expect their profits to increase over the next year and 74 per cent plan to grow their business over the next five years.

Read the full report

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