MMT: how to funds the NHS (and other public services)

The NHS crisis

The NHS has worked well over the decades, supposedly the envy of the world. So what has changed over the last 70-odd years? Simply: funding.

What you need to know:

The solution

  • The Government can fund the NHS (and any other public service) simply if it wants to.
    Yes, it really is that simple. It is a political decision, not a financial one.
  • The Government can do this because it issues currency, rather than uses money.
  • When the Government spends, it doesn’t have to “find” the money,
    though it might have to find the votes in Parliament to spend it.


  • This does not mean that government can spend (print) unlimited amounts of money
  • Government is limited by the available resources
  • A shortage of resources (physical, goods, workers, energy) can result in inflation

Why would Government tell us otherwise?

  • As is said in the 1976 docudrama film All the President’s Men, “Follow the money”.
  • Some people put money and profits before people and health.
  • Relying on taxes gives governments an excuse to underfund (or deliberately defund) public services.
    Why would they do this? Because they believe that privatisation is better.

Note to MMT purists

I know that MMT is only a description of the economy, and does not prescribe any policies. However, MMT has described a “full employment guarantee” as a core policy, and suggests public spending that makes most efficient use of available resources, such as that described here.




See also


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