NHS will only treat responsible patients

Heavy drinkers, smokers and obese people will not receive treatment from the NHS under news plans. The rules are part of a proposal to be announced by Prime Minister Gordon Brown that will outline the “rights and responsibilities” of patients.

The plan is expected to provoke controversy as it ends the NHS’s founding principle of free care for all but the Government believes that banning patients with unhealthy lifestyles from receiving treatment could save the service billions of pounds.

Brown will reveal the proposals in a New Year speech to health workers today (January 2). Some UK hospitals already refuse to treat people with unhealthy lifestyles but there are currently no national guidelines on such cases.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here