12 May 2023
As the Government takes action to make Jersey’s health system fairer and more effective, a
poll launches this week on Islanders’ attitudes to future health and care funding.
The Minister for Health and Social Services, Deputy Karen Wilson, has commissioned the poll
as part of a 2023 Government Plan commitment to develop options for funding Jersey’s
healthcare in the future.
Islanders will be contacted directly by Jersey-based research company 4Insight and invited to
take part. The poll, which is expected to receive up to 1,000 responses, is not intended to
canvas views on specific options for change but rather to understand broader attitudes – for
example Islanders’ thoughts on whether Government should raise more money to spend on
health and care services.
In addition, discussions will also take place with healthcare providers.
Alongside research and analysis being undertaken by specialist healthcare economists, the
Health Economics Unit, the poll will inform potential options for changing the way Jersey
funds health and care services in the future. These potential options will be subject to full
consultation with Islanders in late 2023 or early 2024.
Deputy Wilson said: “We know that many Islanders are concerned about the costs of
healthcare and, as a Government, we want to do all that we can to ensure everyone has access
to good quality health and care services.
“As well as addressing today’s challenges, we are committed to stewardship of our health
system in the longer term. We also know that healthcare costs will increase in Jersey, in
common with the rest of the world, as the costs of treatments and drugs rise, and as more of
us live longer and require more care. This means we all need to start thinking now about how
we best fund healthcare in the future, and I want to start this process by hearing from
Islanders. It is only by understanding the views of our community that we can develop options
for change which are right for Jersey.”
The long-term review into health and care funding is among several initiatives underway to
develop a fairer, more effective and better governed health system. Deputy Wilson is currently
working on plans to provide free GP appointments to children and young people after the States
Assembly voted in December 2022 to allocate £800,000 to subsidise visits for those under 18 as
part of the 2023 budget.
In March the Minister for Social Security, Deputy Elaine Millar, announced a £12 million investment
in community pharmacies over the next three to four years. This package of investment includes
developing new pharmacy-based services to provide advice about medicines and minor ailments
and training more technicians to support the work of registered pharmacists.