Most voters would not be willing to pay extra tax to increase NHS funding, a poll has revealed.

Some 67 per cent said they were against paying more income tax so that the government could allocate more cash to the health service, a Populus poll found.

The respondents said the NHS would benefit more from being reorganised than it would from extra money, with 60 per cent saying this in a survey, and 12 per cent disagreeing.

Young people, those with low incomes and women were most opposed to the extra income tax plan, which has been floated as an option that could come in at the general election.

Reform commissioned the research, which showed most people in all regions of England and a majority in Wales and Scotland are against the idea.

Of 2,000 people asked, 72 per cent agreed that it’s possible for the government to improve services as well as cut tax by slashing waste and reorganising. 

Some 62 per cent agreed that it doesn’t matter who runs health services - private firms, non-profit entities or the state - provided everyone can get care, including the poorest. But 17 per cent said that wasn’t the case.

Director of Reform Andrew Haldenby said there was a “big majority” backing reform over higher income tax. He said 1p more of basic rate tax would cost individuals £12.50 on average per month when the next government is in power, 2016-17.

He said even people who are in favour of the tax plan don’t want to pay that much and the research found they would pay £8.36 each month. For 2014-15 an extra 1p of tax would still cost about £11.00 monthly.