Is there an “informal” age limit on surgical interventions?
Thousands of older patients are dying because they are being denied treatment on the grounds of their age, according to a report by the Royal College of Surgeons, Age UK and MHP Health Mandate.
The authors of the report suggests doctors are looking at people’s age to assess whether they are suitable for treatment, instead of their overall wellbeing and fitness.
The RCS suggested the NHS £20bn efficiency drive also puts older patients at a “heightened risk” of age discrimination because restrictions may be imposed when healthcare workers balance the cost of treatment against the patient’s life expectancy.
The report comes after new legislation prevents age discrimination within the health service.
If a patient is denied drugs or treatment on the grounds of age they can now take legal action against healthcare providers.
- Older people warning against surgery age limits, Nursing Times