GPs have again topped a survey which tested patients' satisfaction with NHS services with 76% of people saying they were happy with the service they received at their community practice.
Research, carried out as part of the latest British Social Attitudes report, also showed outpatients services stood at a promising 60%. Overall only 51% of NHS patients said they were satisfied with the health service.
Worryingly, inpatient treatment satisfaction was down from 74% in 1983 to 49% now, while concern about the quality of medical treatment remained at 49%.
Dental treatment was ranked low, with only 42% of patients saying they were satisfied – this was thought to be due to problems accessing treatment. Although patients who had recently received treatment were happy, with two-thirds of recent NHS dental patients satisfied.
The National Centre for Social Research compiled the results and the survey was funded by the government and a number of charities.
Coauthor of the report John Appleby said: "This is a good news story for the NHS. The public seem to acknowledge and appreciate the increased spending of recent years which has enabled improvements in staffing and waiting times."