Saturday, January 07, 2012

About Those Breast Implants...

So, the moment I heard this story about possible problems with industrial-grade silicon breast implants my knee-jerk reaction was, ‘Hey, you wanna buy bigger tits in France then that’s your problem and I shouldn’t have to pay for it!’ Then I thought about it for a bit and completely changed my mind. I’m guessing that someone who has shelled out for breast implants in France is someone with cash to spare on cosmetic surgery and is unlikely to be a dole scrounging parasite. Therefore, it is probably the case that they’ve been paying into the NHS, and quite likely they have paid in a damned sight more than they’ve had in return, so why shouldn’t they have medical care if there’s a problem with those implants?


NHS doctors do not have the right to lecture us on our lifestyle choices or refuse care. They especially do not have that right when we are forced to pay them. I’ve written this before but I'll write it again: it is like going into a chemist’s to buy Aspirin, paying your money, then being asked why you need the pills. When you say you have a hangover the assistant replies, ‘You shouldn’t drink so much and, because you have, that’s your own fault so I’m not giving you your Aspirin, but I’m keeping your money.’

Of course while this has been going on some NHS berk was on TV connecting these breast implants to smoking and drinking. ‘The NHS has to pay for smokers and drinkers!’ she said, righteously offended. Okay, so the NHS has gone out and earned its own money has it? And it is now having to shell out on those evil smokers and drinkers is it? Erm, no, Mrs NHS Berk, that’s OUR money you’ve got there. We gave it to you on the basis that you would look after us when we’re ill. I don’t recollect anything about you being able to pillory people who aren’t behaving as you would wish. You can’t start changing the rules after the fact.

Incidentally, smokers provide huge revenue for the government and, no matter how the righteous try to twist the figures, they cost the NHS less than non-smokers. Did you think dying young was more expensive than the cost keeping you dribbling and in incontinence pants in an OAP home?  

This is a long and slippery slope, whatever your opinion about smoking and drinking, or fat people (or rather, how much you have responded to the constant indoctrination, de-normalization and demonization from NGOs, government and the NHS itself). Where does it stop? Why, for example, should we pay for the rescue and care of a climber who has fallen off a mountain? Why should we pay for any sports injury? Why should we pay for maternity stuff and childcare? I mean, having children is a lifestyle choice nowadays, isn't it? Why should we pay for that guy cutting off his finger – he obviously wasn’t paying attention when using that Stanley knife. Why should we pay for that woman with malaria? It’s her fault she went on holiday. Why should we pay for that guy with AIDs? He should have used a condom. In fact, on that basis, we shouldn’t pay for any STDs.

And so continue the excuses for refusing treatment because a socialist experiment is, as always, running out of money.

The NHS was supposed to be free for all UK citizens at the point of use, but it is not. Foreigners get treatment they’ve paid nothing towards. We get charged exorbitant prices for medications that can be bought over-the-counter in other countries for a fraction of the cost. NHS dental care costs the same as private dental care elsewhere. Prescription charges are uneven, applying in England but not if you happen to live anywhere else in the UK. The NHS should be broken up and privatised and the only enforced requirement for UK citizens should be medical insurance, which would lead to real choices about your medical care. And, if that happened, the dependence on customer money rather than ‘free government money’ would rapidly shut up such righteous pricks like Mrs NHS Berk.


Ray Blake said...

If I thought for a moment we'd get some sort of compensatory reduction in tax I'd agree to scrap the NHS, but that won't happen. Also there would need to be some way to deal with those who have pre-exisiting conditions that the insurers won't touch.

Neal Asher said...

Gradually cuttting it down and, like government, it's responsibilities should be limited. But as you say - we won't get any money back and taxes won't go down.

Neal Asher said...

I should also add that the NHS should deal with these implants if there is a real problem. It should not respond to media-generated hysteria, other than to maybe hand out some Valium.

Belfaborac said...

Quite frankly the NHS, or the idea of an NHS, is easily Britain's greatest contribution to Western Civilization. To suggest that it should be either dismantled or reduced to provide the bare minimum of services really only makes it obvious that one has never lived in a country or region of the world where no such service exist. FFS, the vast majority of the world's population can't even properly imagine how lucky those of us are, who have access to a national health service.

Privatisation? "Sure, 'cause everything always turns out better and cheaper for the end user when stuff is privatised". Really? OK, name one thing then? Is your water cheaper now? Your electricity? Has your Council Tax gone down after most services were privatised? Has your rail services improved?

No? Neither has mine. And as far as the health service goes, I'd rather pay my income tax and the necessary fees as and when I need to, than have to pay tax *and* a massive health insurance bill every single month, like they do across the pond. Where, incidentally, one sixth of the population can't afford health care at all, but can spend days waiting for emergency treatment in inferior state run hospitals.

It's all too easy to moan when you've never experienced not having access to everything that pesky income tax and NHS fees provide you with. Leave it all behind, go native somewhere less fortunate for a few years and then see if perhaps the tune has changed.

daniel ware said...

Smoking and chronic obesity are not analogous to dodgy breathing/testicle implants though. there should be an element of culpability and personal responsibility to lifestyle and activities that should be considered in treatment/cost (whether smokers represent a net gain or not, for example).

daniel ware said...

Breathing should have read: breast btw. Sodding auto-correct on my phone.... o_O

Neal Asher said...

Belfaborac, the thrust of this post is mainly the Aspirin analogy. You are of course entitled to your opinion, though I suggest you find out how much health insurance costs in relation to what you pay for the NHS.

Daniel, the point is that it isn't personal responsibility if it's enforced. And then you have to ask what right do they have to change or cancel the delivery of something you've already paid for?

Neal Asher said...

Oh, and the NHS costs, nominally, 100 billion a year - that's over £3,000 a second. Divide that over a population of 65 million (nowhere near all of whom are paying) and that's over £1500 each. That would buy a hell of a lot of health insurance. Anyone who thinks they are actually paying fully for the NHS is living in fairy land. Just as with all socialist schemes it's their children who will be paying, generation after generation of them.

Laszlo said...

Neal, I live in Toronto, Canada, another socially funded health care system and I think the problem is in the assumption that things would be better under a privately funded system. Yes, government healthcare has inefficiencies, long wait times for surgeries, testing, etc. But, I'll take that any day over my southern neighbours where it's all private and the system is built completely around profits and the free market. There're anecdotes by the thousands of people with serious medical conditions requiring multiple surgeries each costing into the 100-200 thousand dollar range (heart, etc.) with the private insurance company simply refusing to pay and even cancelling an existing insurance plan overnight. What're you going to do, who're you going to call? Lengthy years long litigation? How're you going to pay for your lawyer's bills when you have to sell your house to pay for your surgery to begin with. And if you think i'm over blowing the situation with an extreme example think again. In a perfect world, in a privately funded system the insurance companies would, while making a profit, always act in the best interests of their clients. Sadly, due to human greed, that isn't and will never be the case.

LatvjuAvs said...

While NHS exists, private health insurances will stay relatively affordable, when that goes private, not any more.
Still, human health is more in zombie mode than any natural.

If anything human life span is going down thanks to "modern" medicine.
My relatives and ancestors few generations(4+) back lived happily till age 120+ far away remote villages in Russia.
There is tons of research about people living beyond 100 years a while ago( not in "modern" world).
And they were not plugged in some sort of life-support system, they work till they die.
Of course in "modern" world we have life span increase thanks for toilet not being same place where to drink from, and some more miracles.

modern - is referenced as industrialised nations with capitalism as dominant governing.

Currently we are breeding so many problems with free health care that even I think, privatised health care might thin out sick people.

In my old sayings we just left sick/old people in forest to die, so they do not take up resources and time.

If I become sick and need to spend rest of my life in some sort of life-support system, thanks but no thanks, if I can't survive in my own I have no place here.

Radical, maybe, but tat is the one way to progress.

Neal Asher said...

Laszlo, I think you've got that back to front. The main assumption is a liberal-left one that privatizing medicine will result in evil capitalist making a profit out of the unwell. Yet, oddly, in America where until the Obamatron passed the Turing Test and got elected, the private system worked well enough to make, for example, their cancer survival rates higher than in Britain.

LatvjuAvs, as far as some treatments are conerned I too will know where to draw the line. I'm old enough now to have personally witnessed the result of certain cancer treatments.

Graeme said...

I'm just so glad I didn't have a boob job.

Thud said... are the rest of us.

Neal Asher said...

Blame the French ... or rather, blame the EU:

Marcus said...

It's strange how the media have jumped on this. I work in the medical device industry. Cardiac devices to be precise. And there are monthly recalls and advisories. The MHRA lists them all. Most don't get any media attention at all, probably because the media don't understand them. But because this deals with breasts it's seems to warrant publicity. From what I can see the failure rate is <1% and any risk to life can be managed by 6 monthly screening. Not what I'd call a serious advisory.

You should check out the Medtronic fidelis lead which currently has an 18 month survival rate of 71.8% and whose failure leads to patients getting at least a big electric shot to the chest and at worst death after failure to deliver therapy or in some very unlucky cases inappropriate therapy delivery.

There are often advisories issued and many are far more serious than this rather innocuous issue.

Neal Asher said...

Marcus, I'm sure the 'serious' media would say it's been picked up because it is an important medical issue. The reality is it has been picked up because its tits, and because there's an irresistable opportunity for righteous patronising superiority over women who wanted bigger ones.