Via Audrey Silk, Daily Mail:
Smokers face breath tests before surgery: Patients will have to prove they have quit before being referred for an operation
Obese patients to be told they cannot have an operation unless they lose weight
The drastic policies are being rolled out in two health trusts in Hertfordshire
First time a health trust has asked patients to prove they have given up smoking
Smokers are to be breathalysed to prove they have quit before being referred for surgery.
Obese patients will also be told they cannot have an operation unless they lose weight.
The drastic policies are being rolled out in two health trusts, which serve 1.2million people.
Patients who smoke will be breathalysed to check they have given up before being referred, while those who are obese must lose 10 per cent of their weight.
Doctors claimed it was the latest example of rationing which is becoming ‘more commonplace’ across the NHS. The two trusts, East and North Hertfordshire and Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Groups, are trying to save £68 million this year.
Any patient who is obese – with a body mass index above 30 – will have to shed at least 10 per cent of their body weight before being referred for non-urgent surgery.
Under the proposals, which were uncovered by the Health Service Journal, smokers must quit completely and doctors won’t just take their word on it. They will be breathalysed to monitor levels of carbon monoxide in blood, to ensure they are telling the truth.
A spokesman for the Clinical Commissioning Groups said patients who hadn’t reformed their lifestyles would only be referred in urgent cases.
It’s just smokers and well-fed people who’re being singled out in this latest example of health fascism. But who’s next? Drinkers are a pretty obvious target. Illegal (i.e. non-pharma) drug users too. Thin people (who will have to put on weight rather than shed weight). People who don’t get enough exercise (insufficient body/muscle mass ratio) will be required to build up muscle.
And why not measure other attributes, like IQ, or sexual orientation or voting preference? I’m sure that studies can be done to show that well-fed Conservative voters tend to be more obese than underfed Socialists. Correlation is causation, of course. So you only get surgical treatment if you stop voting Conservative, and provide evidence of having done so.
It’s eugenics – or Nazi racial science – with a new twist. Instead of measuring the lengths and curvature of people’s noses, you measure any number of other things (carbon dioxide content) and use these various measures to grade people as being ‘healthy’ or ‘unhealthy’, and only select for surgery (or treatment) those that make the grade. So the ‘unhealthy’ who get no treatment will tend to die off quicker than ‘healthy’ who get treatment (assuming the treatment works). That way you create a population of ideal, ‘fit’, ‘healthy’ people, by gradually weeding out all those deemed non-ideal, ‘unfit’ and ‘unhealthy’ just like you create ideal cows and sheep and horses by only allowing ideal ones to live and reproduce. In this manner, you ‘reform’ humanity.
They don’t call it eugenics, of course. It’s now known as Public Health. But it’s essentially the same ideology: directed evolution. You decide what you want people to be like, and you direct them there.
Eugenics never went away. It just changed its name, and retreated for a while into the shadows inside universities and the medical profession. And now it’s back in force.
Audrey Silk’s comment on it was:
This is the sh*t that happens when single payer health care meets Big Anti-Smoker.
I’m not sure if the NHS is “single payer health care”. It’s funded by taxation rather than health insurance. It’s a government service that’s provided for everybody, much like education and roads. I’ve only ever bought medical insurance when I’ve gone on holiday abroad somewhere. I had a private education paid for by my parents, but if I hadn’t I would have got a state education which wouldn’t have been quite as good. According to Google:
Single-payer national health insurance, also known as “Medicare for all,” is a system in which a single public or quasi-public agency organizes health care financing, but the delivery of care remains largely in private hands.
Hmmm. As best I understand the UK healthcare system, it’s the government that finances the NHS, probably through the Ministry of Health. The NHS simply organises the delivery of care in hospitals and drug prescriptions. GPs – general practitioners – are (or were) very often private practitioners who work as doctors in the community, prescribing drugs and referring patients to hospitals as necessary.
Is that about right?
Whichever way it’s organised, once there’s a single healthcare provider, with no competition allowed, there’s scope for the sort of health fascism we’re now seeing. You either do as you’re told, or you don’t get medical treatment.