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Call to fine drunk NHS patients


A right wing think tank has called for drunk NHS patients to be fined and prescriptions for common pain killers to be scrapped.

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The report by 2020Health says treatment for conditions such as acne should not be provided on the NHS, with resources being diverted to tackle “serious illness”.

Responsibility in Healthcare claims that millions are wasted each year on treating obesity, sexually transmitted diseases and alcohol abuse which it says are consequences of “bad lifestyle choices”.

Chief executive of 2020Health Julia Manning said: “The universal healthcare system is at the core of our society, but too often it is treated with the same casual regard as calling for a taxi or booking a train ticket.

“We must encourage people to be more in control of their own health. It’s reassuring to know that the NHS is there for you, but that doesn’t mean you should be free to routinely end up there after a night out.”

She said the NHS should not spend money on treating “minor ailments” and instead patients should be left to cope for themselves.

The report says no cosmetic procedures should be available on the NHS at all.

The comments from Manning, an adviser in the Conservative Party, appeared to fly in the face of David Cameron’s reassurances that he would not cut NHS resources.

A Department of Health spokeswoman said: “The NHS is free to all at the point of need. We are working hard to reduce levels of obesity, alcohol abuse and sexually transmitted infections through targeted awareness-raising campaigns, support and care for all those who need help.”


Readers' comments (3)

  • I work in an acute trauma unit, how may I ask is the government going to tackle the issue of reckless driving to reduce the amount of traumatic injuries & the cost of treatments?

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  • Interesting, does this line of logic extend to everyone who's ever smoked being made to pay for lung cancer treatment and coronary bypass surgery, or anyone who's chosen hormanal contraception (obviously a lifestyle choice) being billed for DVT/PE treatment or breast cancer treatments? who are we going to elect to make these choices......pardon, you mean they won't be elected?!! ahh the sound of the self righteous who obviously don't have glass houses or know anyone who does

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  • I think they should start charging people who end up in A and E after drinking too much... of course the problem with that lies with where to draw the line...
    But I really doubt that someone who has to pay for a stomach pumping in A and E will seriously drink too much again...
    Health care is very expensive and I think a lot of people forget this!

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