Mutualism and Health Care Hospital Contributory Schemes in Twentieth-Century Britain

by ; ;
  • ISBN13:


  • ISBN10:


  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2013-08-31
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press

Note: Supplemental materials are not guaranteed with Rental or Used book purchases.

Purchase Benefits

  • Free Shipping On Orders Over $35!
    Your order must be $35 or more to qualify for free economy shipping. Bulk sales, PO's, Marketplace items, eBooks and apparel do not qualify for this offer.
  • Get Rewarded for Ordering Your Textbooks! Enroll Now
List Price: $30.95 Save up to $3.09
  • Rent Book $27.86
    Add to Cart Free Shipping


Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?

  • The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.
  • The Rental copy of this book is not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.


Mutualism and Health Care, newly available in paperback, presents the first comprehensive account of a major innovation in hospital funding before the NHS. The voluntary hospitals, which provided the bulk of Britain's acute hospital services, diversified their financial base by establishing hospital contributory schemes. Through these, working people subscribed small, regular amounts to their local hospitals, in return for which they were eligible for free hospital care.

The book evaluates the extent to which the schemes were successful in achieving comprehensive coverage of the population, funding hospital services, and broadening opportunities for participation in the governance of health care and for the expression of consumer views. It then explores why the option of funding the post-war NHS through mass contribution was rejected, and traces the transformation of the surviving schemes into health cash plans.

This is a substantial investigation into the attractions and limitations of mutualism in health care. It is highly relevant to debates about organisational innovations in the delivery of welfare services.

Author Biography

Martin Gorsky is Senior Lecturer in the Contemporary History of Public Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

John Mohan is Professor of Social Policy at the University of Southampton.

Tim Willis is a Research Officer in the Department for Work and Pensions.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. The emergence of hospital contributory schemes
3. Mass contribution and hospital finance in inter-war Britain
4. The geography of hospital contributory schemes: membership, reciprocity and integration
5. Hospital contribution and civil society: humanity not democracy?
6. Contributory schemes, workmen governors and local control of hospital policy
7. The 'impending cataclysm': the state and hospital contribution, 1941-1946
8. The contributory schemes and the coming of the NHS
9. 'Where the shoe pinches': reorientation under the NHS
10. The health cash plans and the new mutualism in health care
11. Concluding comments

Rewards Program

Write a Review