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Two thirds of NHS trusts ignore IVF guidelines – why is it not all of them?

Shocking news from The BBC that 70% of NHS trusts are not offering IVF treatment that complies with official guidelines :

More than 70% of NHS trusts and care providers are ignoring official guidance on offering infertile couples three chances at IVF, according to a report by an all-party group of MPs.

Some primary care trusts have stopped offering IVF altogether.

Others are placing tough restrictions on who can qualify.

The MPs say the result is a postcode lottery of care and are calling on trusts to implement the official guidelines properly.

Shocking to me that it’s only 70% and not every damned one of them!

What started out as a cheap health service has mutated over the years into an all encompassing monster that consumes money like it is going out of fashion as demonstrated by the NHS itself :

When the NHS was launched in 1948 it had a budget of £437million (roughly £9billion at today’s value). In 2008/9 it received over 10 times that amount (more than £100billion).This equates to an average rise in spending over the full 60-year period of about 4% a year once inflation has been taken into account. However, in recent years investment levels have been double that to fund a major modernisation programme.

Yes, that is a ten fold increase in budget at current values.

What do we get for a ten fold increase? Well things like tattoo removal and IVF to name two non-life threatening treatments that we all have to pay for under threat of state force.

Add to that gastric bands for those who have a mouth bigger than their arse and nose or boob jobs for the vain and we have an all encompassing provider of non-health services that cost us an arm, a leg and several internal organs worth of taxes each year :

The money to pay for the NHS comes directly from taxation.

The 2008/9 budget roughly equates to a contribution of £1,980 for every man, woman and child in the UK.

Whilst I am sure that not being able to trot out a few kids is quite painful for the couple concerned, how does their need trump the needs of those with actual medical conditions that affect actual quality of life rather than some perceived injustice at being unable to breed?

It is unfortunate that any kind of discussion along the lines of trimming the NHS down to what it was intended to be is tantamount to calling the Queen a slut in our current political circles but our political system doesn’t even offer a choice in this matter. Any mention of the NHS in party propaganda manifestos tends to turn into a game of who can promise spend the most on the beast of a service.

I am pretty sure that they could trim at least 30% from the NHS budget if not a damned sight more and no one with an actual, real health problem would go without.

Whilst that trimming may create uproar amongst the shroud waving classes, it would at least go a long way to putting our spending in order as would stopping International Aid but that’s another story.

Unfortunately, the only way the NHS will be trimmed or for that matter any other state spending, will be when the UK goes bust which is still a strong possibility despite what we are told by our caring masters.

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4 comments to Two thirds of NHS trusts ignore IVF guidelines – why is it not all of them?

  • “”Others are placing tough restrictions on who can qualify.””

    They sure are. Our Polish cleaner who has been in England for less than a year has just had IVF on the NHS.
    She also had two weeks off to ‘recover’ on the advice of her doctor. The company did not pay her for this time off but they stopped short at firing her arse. As I understand it, no one would have had an objection to them doing so.
    Bucko´s last blog post ..This next post will be written in the style of Sandi Toksvig

    • Wasp

      Bucko – I am sure the tough restrictions mentioned are just window dressing to keep the administrators and ministers happy. I would think that reality is more like a free for all for anything and everything that is supposedly restricted whilst poor old buggers end up unable to walk for want of a new knee because the cash has been pissed up the wall on boob jobs, IVF and gastric bands.

  • elliebellie

    totally agree – basic level care is ignored while expensive elective surgery/treatments are seen as a ‘right’ – and too much reliance is placed on expensive machinery/tests while common sense & actually listening to/observing the patient is ignored.

    • Wasp

      elliebelie – it would be interesting to know just how much they could trim from the NHS if it returned to proper basic healthcare. Unfortunately our politicians don’t even have the backbone to entertain that thought let alone actually doing something about the vast sums of money hosed at the NHS.