Proposals for a new tax specially to fund the NHS have sparked a fierce debate.
Liberal Democrats are proposing an NHS and social care tax which would replace National Insurance.
They say it would mean many people pay more tax in total - but the money is urgently needed to fund the health service.
But the plan has been criticised by many Labour politicians.
Birmingham MP Khalid Mahmood (Lab Perry Barr) said: “Governments already have a duty to fund the NHS properly and adding an extra layer of bureaucracy won’t protect the health service if the government isn’t really committed to doing that.”
The Lib Dem plan has been drawn up by a panel of health experts appointed by the party, including Sir David Nicholson, former chief executive of NHS England, and Peter Carter, former chief executive of the Royal College of Nursing.
They pointed out that NHS trusts recorded a total deficit of £770 million in the last financial year, despite receiving £1.8bn in bailout funding.
In social care, the Local Government Association has warned there will be a £2.3bn funding gap in adult social care services by 2020.
They said the NHS in England needed least £4bn in exra funding, in real terms, in 2018-19. And this should be followed by an annual rise of at least £2.5bn a year in real terms for two more years. Other parts of the UK would also get a funding increase.
The experts said: “We recommend bringing together health and care funding in a single, ring-fenced tax which would replace National Insurance.
“This should be combined with social care funding which is currently raised through council tax to raise the amount needed to sustain good quality services.”
In other measures the report called for the creation of an office for budget responsibility for health, new incentives to encourage people to save more towards adult social care, and the reinstatement of the cap on care costs.
Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable said: “This specialist report provides some convincing answers on arguably the greatest domestic crisis facing the country: how to deal with the severe pressures on health and social care services.
"We must never again be in a position whereby funding is so short that more than 50,000 operations have had to be postponed over the course of a single month.
“The health and care budget should be financed by an earmarked tax, which could replace national insurance.
"Many of those previously strongly opposed now accept that, in the case of the NHS, there is a strong argument for a form of ringfenced tax.”
But Mr Mahmood said: “The Liberal Democrats are missing the point. There will always be difficulties unless the government is committed to supporting the NHS.
“Creating a new tax won’t change that.
“What you need is a manifesto commitment to providing the funding the NHS needs, which Labour has, and a government which is serious about doing that.”
National Insurance is currently charged on employees 12% on income between £680 and £3,750 a month, and 2% on income above £3,750 a month. The rates are different for people who are self-employed.
An analysis by the Trinity Mirror data unit in January found that every bed at Walsall Healthcare was recorded as full for two weeks running.
Other hospitals with a high average occupancy rate during the week were University Hospitals Birmingham, which was 98.7% full, Sandwell and West Birmingham, 95.3% full, and the Royal Wolverhampton, 94.5% full.