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National Health Service

Volume 131: debated on Thursday 14 April 1988

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To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the annual cost incurred by the Treasury in raising and then distributing that proportion of financial resources which is designated by the Government to be spent on the National Health Service.

There are no separate arrangements for collecting revenue to fund particular activities. In 1987–88 total central Government revenues from taxes arid national insurance contributions are estimated at around £144 billion. Most of these revenues are collected by Her Majesty's Customs and Excise and Inland Revenue. The administrative costs of the two Departments were £1·5 billion. Some £20·7 billion was spent on the NHS so, on a pro rata basis, the cost of collecting centrally-funded NHS expenditure was about £215 million. The costs of distributing the funds spent on the NHS cannot be separately identified.