We are the proposition and are totally in accordance with the motion. First and foremost I would like to redefine the motion to This House would decline priority medical treatment to those who choose not to help themselves, i. e. make poor lifestyle choices. I am going to discuss how the main lifestyle choices affect the NHS and furthermore how the taxpayer is forced to compensate for an unworthy cause. In the UK it is estimated that up to 9,500 beds are blocked daily by smokers, and that up to eight million doctor consultations are required on their behalf each year.
While it is true that smokers often pay a lot of tax for their habit, taxation is necessary as a deterrent and to fund the NHS for people who genuinely require treatment. The money that the NHS should be used for more worthy causes, such as people suffering from more serious illnesses which weren’t brought upon by themselves. Moreover, the core point again is about free choice. Smokers choose to buy tobacco and pay tax; it is not forced upon them. 8 of the top ten deaths in men in the UK are linked to smoking, two of the most prevalent being lung cancer and heart disease which costs millions to cure every year.
We accept that nobody chooses either to be rich but always or suddenly ill, or to be poor but always healthy. But everyone who chooses to smoke – chooses to smoke, everyone who chooses to eat excessively – chooses to eat excessively etc. Sorry, but unless somebody has a specific genetic problem, they should not receive free medical assistance from the NHS. Obesity is too costing the country millions. It is almost as if individuals feel that the country has to look after them, so they don’t care to do it for themselves.
It’s strange, but obesity has increased by 50% over the past 15 years and this has nothing to do with genetic or hereditary disorders; but more to do with lifestyle, diet and lack of exercise. It is as if individuals who are obese will make any excuse for their weight other than the obvious. I think that obesity lacks justification to smoking as it is a physiological disorder stemming from emotional instability and depression rather than chemical addiction, which is ultimately easier to fight against.
The taxpayer who supports the NHS should not be paying for the outcomes of those who refuse to accept help offered. I am tired of my parents paying for the poor health of those who deliberately make poor lifestyle choices and at some point hope the alcoholics/other drug addicts acknowledge their diseases/problems and accept help for them. Many suggest that the NHS don’t strive to help those who require help. But they provide the services and the onus is on those with dire health conditions.
The tax is increased to compensate for the numerous illnesses stemmed from these unhealthy lifestyles, therefore, your parents who touch wood won’t need the NHS for serious medical problems are paying for somebody else’s medical care who doesn’t seize their opportunity. Experts warned last month that obesity, which costs the NHS [pound]7bn a year, could bankrupt it if left unchecked and predicted that the proportion of obese adults would rise from one in five to one in three by 2010.
Smoking-related diseases cost an estimated [pound]1. 7bn a year, with the same amount spent on alcohol-related problems. The treatment of alcohol-related harm, such as violent crime and traffic accidents, costs an estimated [pound]20bn. It is much cheaper for the NHS to run tests to exclude those who have chosen to deliberately abuse their bodies (i. e. Smoke 50 cigarettes a day, rather than 10) rather than carrying out lots of expensive surgeries, on people who ignore all the propaganda against these poor lifestyles.