News From The Web

Decision to deny surgery to obese patients is like ‘racial discrimination’

The decision by an NHS body to restrict obese patients’ access to elective surgery until they lose weight is comparable with racial or religious discrimination, a surgeon has said.

The Vale of York clinical commissioning group will make people wait for up to a year for treatment for non-life-threatening conditions such as hip and knee replacements if their body mass index is 30 or higher.

The group said it had taken the decision because it was the “best way of achieving maximum value from the limited resources available”.

Shaw Somers, a bariatric surgeon from Portsmouth, said the move was a logical step and could save money, but amounted to discrimination because obesity was an illness.

“They [the patients] are trying to lose weight in the vast majority of cases and to deny them treatment that they need on the basis of their weight, without then offering them effective help to help them lose weight is rather like discriminating [against] a segment of the population on the basis of their colour or religious persuasion,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

Read more in The Guardian.

Bookmark and Share

Post a Comment

Enter this security code

Submit Comment for Moderation