Charging people to see their GP may seem a somewhat perverse idea.

Wasn’t the central founding principle of the health service the rejection of price as a way to allocate health care? Wouldn’t charges be unfair and the very abnegation of this principle?

On the other hand, surely a nominal charge – £10 a visit, say – would not only raise significant amounts of money for a cash-strapped NHS but also deal with the perennial complaint from GPs that they often see people who have rather trivial medical complaints – often self-limiting or easily treated by patients themselves?

Read more of this blog from John Appleby, Director of Research and Chief Economist at the Nuffield Trust.