BORIS Johnson’s manifesto commitment-busting tax hike has been criticised for being unfair across the generations and offering more benefits to wealthy southern households.

The Resolution Foundation think tank acknowledged the Prime Minister had grasped the issue of addressing adult social care which had been ducked by previous occupants of No 10.

But the majority of the money raised in the first three years of the package is intended for the NHS and the think tank raised concerns about the way it will be funded.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said the decision to abandon the election pledge in order to provide £12 billion extra a year for the NHS and adult social care was the sign of a “responsible and serious government”.

But he acknowledged the extra money may not be enough to clear NHS waiting lists.

The new health and social care levy will be based on increased national insurance contributions and caps the total lifetime cost of care in England at £86,000 from October 2023.

The Resolution Foundation, a think tank focused on living standards, said the new system was generationally unfair because the bulk of the money comes from working age people.

Mr Javid defended the package, telling the BBC: “These are the acts of a responsible and serious government.

“As Health and Social Care Secretary, I can certainly point to the huge challenges – fair to say the biggest challenges in our lifetime – that the NHS and social care have faced.

“As a government you can either stand back and leave it as ‘business as usual’, or you can address it and help tackle these challenges.”

He said that “doggedly” sticking to the manifesto commitment could have led to 13 million people being on NHS waiting lists in three years’ time as a result of the backlog built up during the pandemic.


Asked if the money would clear the backlog, Mr Javid told Sky News: “No responsible health secretary can make that kind of guarantee.”

He added: “What I can be absolutely certain of is that this will massively reduce the waiting list from where it would otherwise have been.”