Smokers and the obese must 'heal themselves'

 

Click to follow
The Independent Online

NHS patients who smoke or are obese are being told they must "heal themselves" before being granted access to surgery, in a dramatic extension of NHS rationing as doctors struggle to find £20bn of savings over the next four years.

Family doctors from 50 GP practices in Hertfordshire providing care to 450,000 patients have agreed to block those who smoke or have a BMI of over 30 from being referred for routine hip or knee replacement surgery, without first being referred to a weight management or quit smoking scheme. The restriction, introduced eight weeks ago, is to be extended to all routine surgery, one specialty at a time, over the next few months. Similar moves to ration care are being debated by family doctors across the country.

Comments