More than a third of people treated on the NHS believe that they have experienced unacceptable standards of care, according to an ITV News Index poll carried out by ComRes.
They blame a target culture among management and a lack of compassion among NHS staff.
Of those surveyed, 55% said they believe patient care in the NHS is worse today than it was 10 years ago.
When asked the question, "Has NHS nursing become less compassionate in recent years", 65% of respondents agreed.
However 58% felt that overall, the NHS provides a high standard of care to patients.
A nurse who has worked on NHS wards for 25 years told ITV News why she believes patient care has deteriorated.
Jennie Fecitt said the problem is not that nurses lack compassion - she claims it is because there are "not enough staff on the shop floor".
– Jennie Fecitt, nurse
There's not enough qualified nurses, the skill mix is wrong and the most experienced nurses are busy doing the paper work, doing the discharges, chasing up doctors, chasing up the pharmacy, and therefore they're not able to supervise the other staff.
ITV News presenter Mary Nightingale has this special report: