But that’s why we have an NHS

More than half a million people have been hospitalised in the past three years because of drink or drugs, with those in their 40s behind a surge in cases that is putting a strain on the NHS, official figures reveal.

A total of 533,302 people in England have been admitted to hospital as an emergency since 2010 with serious health problems related to their consumption of alcohol or illicit substances. The vast majority were admissions for conditions specifically related to alcohol abuse, such as liver problems. Of those, 60,738 were aged 40 to 44 and another 60,083 were 45 to 49 – together, more than a fifth of the total. Some were admitted a number of times between 2010 and 2013.

OK.

Doctors’ leaders and NHS bosses warned that alcohol’s burden on the NHS was unsustainable. “It is vital that we take more action to tackle the impact of excessive alcohol consumption on the UK’s population and the NHS,” said a spokesman for the British Medical Association. “As the Dr Foster research highlights, this is a problem that affects large numbers of people across all age groups and as a result places serious strain on a number of already overstretched NHS services.

Umm, but this is why we have an NHS. To provide us with health care. That’s why the organisation gets £100 billion a year of our cash: to treat us.

No, not to tell us we shouldn’t do things so they don’t have to treat us.

Other than that it’s all the usual nonsense about minimum pricing and so on. And the sums they are whining about the NHS having to spend on this are tiny when compared to the tax raised on the booze being drunk.

17 thoughts on “But that’s why we have an NHS”

  1. “It is vital that we take more action to tackle the impact of excessive alcohol consumption on the UK’s population and the NHS,”

    So, you start something that shields people from the negative effects of alcohol consumption and are somehow surprised when people do more of it? And your solution is to impose *more* regulation rather than less regulation that requires people to bear that burden?

  2. Sigh.

    I presume they are still following their old procedures. Certain conditions are held to arise from alcohol consumption. Therefore when a person presents these conditions on admission or at A&E they are marked as an alcohol related admission.

    You may be a teetotal, but if you go to A&E with dizziness because your blood pressure is 160/100, you are an alcohol related admission.

    Over the years they have widened the scope of what they consider to be alcohol related conditions and, lo! alcohol related admissions are on the increase!

    I read an article like this a few days ago in the DT. I said then that it reminded me awfully of the other great con, climate change. It also had that similarity whereby a non-expert is quoted as an authority. In that case, it was Julia Manning head of Twenty20 health. She’s an optician…

  3. Give them a choice: Maximum nannying and slash the NHS budget (as we’ll all be fit as a fiddle …) or they keep having their pockets stuffed with our money and they treat us as they find us.

    The article also says the poor are disproportionately present in those statistics. Minimum pricing will see the poor spend more of their low incomes on drink rather than encourage them to stop spending it on drink.

    The article also says the cost of drink and drugs admissions is £607 million a year. The revenue raised by alcohol taxes is north of £10 billion. Minimum pricing is an attempt to maintain tax revenues but lower the relatively paltry cost of treating alcohol related problems.

  4. According to the report these numbers are genuine

    The codes used to identify patients are taken from the Health and Social Care Information Centre’s annual reports on drug and alcohol use. From the alcohol report, only those that are 100 per cent alcohol attributable are used.

  5. If I’ve paid for an all-inclusive car servicing package, I appreciate my mechanic giving me little tips like using engine braking to prolong the life of the brake-pads and thus minimise inconvenient visits to the mechanic. (Even if the visits are “free”, they still cost me in time.)

    What I resent is my mechanic lobbying for higher fuel taxes on the basis that if I drive less my brake pads will be less worn.

  6. PaulB:

    Liars, of course, never ever assure anyone that their lies are the truth.
    Thank Goodness, because our ability to spot them as liars might be compromised if they did.

  7. So you go to dinner with a friend. Your friend insists on picking up the tab. On the drive home, he complains on and on about what the meal cost.

    Jerk.

    Government insists on picking up the tab for health care. Then complains about the cost.

    Jerks.

  8. I always say that this is the single biggest prolem with the NHS: it has bred this attitude into its staff that, when you treat a patient, you are using up money that could have been used to treat another patient. The other patient never presents, of course: no matter who’s in front of them requiring treatment right now, they’re always concerned about the hypothetical other patients who are having their hypothetical future medicine used up by the selfish currently ill people. It corrupts the Hippocratic Oath.

  9. “No, not to tell us we shouldn’t do things so they don’t have to treat us.”

    where do you get this idea from? Or rather, that might be what you think the NHS should or shouldn’t be doing, but others may differ.

    why isn’t offering health advice – don’t do this, do that – a legitimate part of what the NHS is for? What do you want to see, a specific piece of legislation passed saying “we would like the NHS to issue advice”?

  10. It’s intriguing how in the leftists world when
    – corporates argue for a specific piece of legislation it is lobbying and should be condemned, if not forbidden
    – government bodies or unions do the same (for money that has been forced off us) it is perfectly legitimate “health advice” or similar

  11. I always say that this is the single biggest prolem with the NHS: it has bred this attitude into its staff that, when you treat a patient, you are using up money that could have been used to treat another patient.

    Indeed, it’s a fundamenal problem. Instead of having an income, you have “resources”. Instead of going “Oh good, another customer”, you go “oh no, another consumer of our limited resources”. And so on.

  12. @ PaulB
    Dr Foster’s report starts with an extraordinary claim “This year’s Hospital Guide looks at four areas:
    (i) How financial austerity is aff ecting the way we spend money on hospital treatment.
    Since the government is still spending some £100 billion in excess of its income and “Dave” Cameron has protected the NHS from real cuts in its budget (i.e. spending in money terms rises in line with inflation) – this is either insane or a disguised lie.
    You know better than to trust that sort of junk.

  13. @ Andrew M
    I don’t pay for an all-inclusive package, but the mechanic still gives me tips. There are still some guys who want to do a good job.

  14. Pingback: Our Obamacare future: England’s NHS bosses warn alcohol’s burden on the NHS is unsustainable | motorcitytimes.com

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