IT IS NOW OFFICIAL
“Ministers also announced that, from today, NHS trusts should not withdraw treatment from patients who choose to pay privately for the latest medicines not yet approved by the National Institute for health and Clinical Excellence, which assesses the cost-effectiveness of NHS treatments in England and Wales.
The landmark review published today by Professor Mike Richards, the national clinical director for cancer, recommends a package of measures designed to substantially improve access to medicines on the health service and reduce the need fo patients to resort to private treatment.”
It is time therefore, to move on to the second issue which is not as barbaric as the first but nevertheless needs addressed as soon as possible.
What happens if NICE refuses to endorse an expensive drug which is KNOWN to work well?
We witches are of the opinion that rationing may well be inevitable within the NHS, but it should not even be considered until the following criteria are fulfilled :
1. All unnecessary wastage and squandering of NHS money is eliminated.
2. All effective available care is given to seriously ill patients.
ie if rationing occurs it should be, with a few exceptions, at the “healthy” end of the morbidity scale.
However, Jonathan Waxman, Professor of Oncology at Imperial College, of London goes further than that. He is of the opinion that rationing is not necessary at all (the bold italics are mine).
“What about those patients who don’t have a house to mortgage? Are we saying that health is available only to the rich?
There is, however, fat in the system and it could be trimmed. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) is already too costly and unnecessary, with a role largely filled by the European Medicines Agency, which licenses treatments in the first place. We have 150 primary care trusts making 150 decisions on the same healthcare issues – including whether patients should receive high-cost drugs – at a cost of £5 billion.
Our country can have all the treatments that it needs for all the people that we treat by cutting bureaucracy. Surely it is better to slam a few fingers in desks and provide the band aids than forget the poor?”
Will someone, somewhere do the sums accurately and let the people know.
a red apple ……………………