UPDATE (Dymphna’s): Wretchard posted on this topic, titling his essay A Bottle of Whiskey and a Loaded Revolver.
Snipped from The Telegraph:
Paul Mason, a GP in Portland, Dorset, said there were good clinical reasons for denying surgery to some patients. “The issue is: how much responsibility do people take for their health?” he said.
“If an alcoholic is going to drink themselves to death then that is really sad, but if he gets the liver transplant that is denied to someone else who could have got the chance of life then that is a tragedy.” He [ Dr. Mason from Dorset] said the case of George Best, who drank himself to death in 2005, three years after a liver transplant, had damaged the argument that drinkers deserved a second chance.
To which Wretchard adds…
So maybe God, after all, is nothing that even socialism can abolish. Those unwilling to trust that there is meaning to universe can still hope there will be beds available at the NHS or compassion in the heart of a bureaucrat.
As usual, “read the comments…”
I wrote on Friday about the inevitable slide towards euthanasia of the elderly that is inherent in the logic of socialized medicine.
Now the process is becoming quite explicit. The National Health Service in the UK seems to be ready to issue guidelines and protocols for letting obstinately unfit people die. According to yesterday’s Daily Telegraph:
Don’t treat the old and unhealthy, say doctors
Doctors are calling for NHS treatment to be withheld from patients who are too old or who lead unhealthy lives.
Smokers, heavy drinkers, the obese and the elderly should be barred from receiving some operations, according to doctors, with most saying the health service cannot afford to provide free care to everyone.
The health service cannot afford to provide free care to everyone.
That’s not what you promised us sixty years ago when the practice of medicine was nationalized in the UK. Everyone, no matter how indigent, was entitled to medical care. That’s what the Fabian nannies told us back in the halcyon days of EngSoc. So what happened to all those glittering promises?
The rule has been changed a little bit. They just added a dependent clause to the end:
Everyone, no matter how indigent, is entitled to medical care, provided they adhere to the behavioral guidelines established by the experts of the NHS.
And here’s one to alarm the abortion-on-demand crowd:
– – – – – – – – –
Fertility treatment and “social” abortions are also on the list of procedures that many doctors say should not be funded by the state.
The NHS doctors are making visible and explicit a process which is already occurring unofficially:
About one in 10 hospitals already deny some surgery to obese patients and smokers, with restrictions most common in hospitals battling debt.
Managers defend the policies because of the higher risk of complications on the operating table for unfit patients. But critics believe that patients are being denied care simply to save money.
Both of those explanations can be true. Unfit patients do have a higher risk of complications. And denying people care does save money.
It’s important to remember that dying early makes you less of a burden to the socialist State.
Which also means that the State has a vested interested in your untimely demise.
Just keep that in mind every time you look at those brochures showing handsome smiling doctors and nurses next to happy and healthy patients. Ah, yes, “the NHS is here to serve you.” Bu the truth is somewhat different.
If people controlled their own health care with their own money, they could decide for themselves what they needed to save money on. But that’s Stone Age thinking, and unworthy of contemplation here in the Age of Socialism.
Or at least it used to be unworthy of contemplation, until the budget crunch hit home. Now that the free market has been thoroughly destroyed, it’s time for you to pay for your own treatment:
Among the survey of 870 family and hospital doctors, almost 60 per cent said the NHS could not provide full healthcare to everyone and that some individuals should pay for services.
One in three said that elderly patients should not be given free treatment if it were unlikely to do them good for long. Half thought that smokers should be denied a heart bypass, while a quarter believed that the obese should be denied hip replacements.
Those who obey the directives of the NHS doctors deserve to be treated. The disobedient, stubborn, recalcitrant, selfish, and subversive have no right to treatment. Just let ’em die: it will help weed all the independent thinkers out of the gene pool.
Not all the doctors agree:
Responding to the survey’s findings on the treatment of the elderly, Dr Calland, of the BMA, said: “If a patient of 90 needs a hip operation they should get one. Yes, they might peg out any time, but it’s not our job to play God.”
That’s what you think. Ever since God was officially pronounced dead, one of the main functions of the State has been to play God.
The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away.
Hat tip: Fausta.