Re-Evaluating the Right to Free Treatment Essay

2138 WordsMay 14, 20129 Pages
Re-Evaluating the Right to Free Treatment Re-evaluating the Right to Free Treatment The National Health Service (NHS) says that the treatment of conditions such as heart disease and diabetes, which are often the result of personal lifestyle choices relating to diet and lack of exercise, costs the UK taxpayer millions of pounds every year. In fact, on July 31, 2008, The Telegraph reported that the UK government had spent in excess of 750 million pounds was used on drugs alone to treat lifestyle related diseases. According to official government figures, the use of prescription drugs to treat “obesity, diabetes, alcoholism, and smoking” has increased substantially (Smith, 2008, para 2). The upsurge in lifestyle related conditions is posing a great challenge to the National Health Service. Every citizen is entitled to quality health care but the provision of this right is proving to be extremely expensive for the National Health Service as well as the taxpayers. This essay therefore aims to examine the ability of National Health Service to guarantee this in relation to its spending on the treatment of lifestyle diseases that have become a heavy burden for the service to bear. To achieve this, the easy will critically analyse three diseases: heart disease, type 2 diabetes and lung cancer with a view of assessing their financial implication on the NHS as well as the UK taxpayer. The paper will also outline reasons against the withdrawal of the National Health Service’s free treatment for people who have made choices that have damaged their health. The leading cause of death among the United Kingdom’s population is coronary heart disease (CHD). The National Health Service estimates that one in every five men succumbs to this disease and one death in every seven women each year. In total, coronary heart disease results in about ninety four thousand
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