Sunday, September 29, 2013


Discrimination is everywhere, it's essentially what people do. However when it comes to what the state offers, then discrimination is a problem as smokers are now finding out.
Patients are being denied minor treatments because they smoke, The Mail on Sunday has found.
In one case a healthy middle-aged man was told he could not have a ten-minute operation to cut a small benign growth off the side of his head, because of his habit.
Paul Merrett thought it would be no problem to get the inch-long fatty lump, called a lipoma, removed.
But when he attended King George Surgery in Stevenage, his GP said he could not have the minor operation – which doctors often do under local anaesthetic in their own consulting rooms.
Mr Merrett, 46, said: ‘I was told, in no uncertain terms, that unless I gave up smoking or signed up to a quitting clinic they would refuse to treat me. I was gobsmacked.’
He claims the doctor told him: ‘These directions are not mine. It’s not me refusing this treatment, it’s the NHS trust.’
Mr Merrett, who smokes ten roll-ups a day, said: ‘It makes me livid. I can count how many times I have needed to rely on the NHS in the past ten years on one hand. I pay into the system and it’s my right to be able to use it when I need it.’
Now I don't smoke, never have, though it's never bothered me in the way that some people get het up  about it, there are far worse things out there than smoking after all. Still, if you pay into the NHS via your National Insurance ponzi scheme then you'd expect the same benefits to be available to all, not on a selective basis. That's not how the righteous see things of course, they only want healthy people to have access to the NHS... healthy meaning that no one is using it at all. They want lists and exclusions that fit their own particular prejudices and if they get away with one thing, then you can be damned sure that these lists will be expanded, you can see it in their current pogroms against smokers, drinkers, the obese (by their standards not the actual one) those who eat too much sugar, high in cholesterol, high blood pressure etc.
Not that they aren't prepared to take your money, just prevent you from using it as it was intended, rather like an insurance claim being rejected due to some small clause that you hadn't noticed, with the added insult to injury of not being able to opt out.
Mr Merrett is probably the first of many, he managed to get it overturned, but sooner or later it will be the norm and then they'll move to other targets until only the healthy have access to the NHS, basically those who don't need it...

7 annotations:

Rickie said...

Good for the NHS to give to help with britain's biggest killer to, sign up for quitting clinic first, the idea works well with the Job centers helping the unemployed to find work on courses or get their benefits cut, nobody says the unemployed should get special treatment because some of them have already paid taxes.

When you move smoking into the private world then the similar rules apply, dental implants will not be given to smokers in many cases, obese and smokers will be advised to stop smoking or lose weight before knee replacements, the risks of smoking aren't ignored because wads of cash are being waived.

its my public money and i don't give a shit about those who don't give a fuck if the complications or failure rates are much higher because they smoke, the NHS has to spend our money carefully its not a bottomless pit.

Lets hope that if you need the NHS angry quiet man then there is still money in the pot in your health region and its not been wasted on failed surgery because smokers wont help themselves, and the surgery has to be re-done.

I agree on opting out of paying taxes for the NHS, no pay no NHS. Smokers should also pay a higher premium to be allowed NHS services, this idea works well with life insurance, you dont have to have it,or you pay a higher premium if you smoke.

There is a big financial debt hanging around the neck of the country, public services are under scrutiny, smokers are not going to be excluded when they are risks that money spent on them could be wasted. lets help smokers quit or make them realise that there might be other problems long before premature death if they don't at least try to quit.

Quiet_Man said...

Just hope you never ever find yourself refused treatment because of a foible on your part Rickie. Still it would be a bit of rough justice for you I suppose.

Able said...

Rickie, rather than just accepting and spouting the anti-smoking, anti-obese clap-trap you've been fed, you might wish to look at some 'real' research.

Take knee replacement surgery. Both smokers and those above the made-up 'ideal weight' do 'better' post surgery than non-smokers - fact. (Unlike you self-made experts, I've actually worked in that specialty).

"Britains biggest killer", are you sh****ng me? The life expectancy (and rates of cancer) in smokers is identical to non-smokers - fact! Just because you've been told some manipulated statistics that supposedly show smoking causes everything from cancer to in-grown toenails doesn't make it true.

Did you know, check the books, that >80% of health service provision is used by 'ladies'? Maybe we should up their premiums eh?

And that's not even considering the fact that the tax revenues from smokers funds the 'entire' NHS - so it's pay up but no service for you, you just get to fund the brain-dead, bigoted, holier-than-thou, puritan a***holes.

I'd feel sorry for you if you weren't being such a (probably typical) P***k. It's guaranteed that one aspect of your PC lifestyle will be judged 'unacceptable' at some point - I can only wait with baited breath for the screams of indignation when it's 'your' harmless pastime that prevents the treatment you've paid for occurring.

Rickie said...

Good grief Able where did you drag those stats up from, have a google about life expectancy and smoking...identical for fucks sake, 10 years more like it.

Knee replacement how about a 10 fold higher failure rate for smokers...go on have a google again, that's what costs the NHS money not how they do "better" post surgery cos they seem happier with a fag, its all the same with dental implants, smoking is a must not for implants

Tax revenue smoking 12 billion, NHS 109 billion,

You must be taking the piss with your real research, this is a fucking wind up aint it,... funds the entire NHSf for fucks sake, you really haven't clue have you.

yep i fully expect my future NHS treatment to be far from a certainty, the money just won't be there in the future in my opinion.

Don't reply with daft stats that you have imagined, do some research first,

google is your friend.

Kath Gillon said...

It's the same old story good enough to contribute to the NHS much more than everyone else with all the tax on fags and booze but ask for some of it back in terms of treatment and you can forget it....

Ted Treen said...

When they refuse treatment to crashed racing drivers, fallen mountaineers, skull-damaged rigby players etc., etc., etc. on the equally valid grounds of "Self-inflicted excessive risk" then I will accept such nonsense.

I don't ever recall any GP advising me to give up motorcycling on the grounds of injury risk (health hazard by another name).

Nannying control-freaks and nothing more!

Able said...

Rickie "have a Google"

Really? Doubt there's a Loch Ness Monster? Have a Google, you'll find "Google is your friend".

Yes the 'entire' NHS budget is currently set at over £109 billion, 60% is staff costs, 25% building costs - so taxation on smokers funds all NHS treatment, not just the made-up 'extra' allegedly caused by smoking.

Try reading the medical literature on TKRs - not the ASH published sound-bites - there's a difference.

Pointless since anti-smoking is obviously your new religion. Burn't anybody at the stake for lighting up yet you zealot?