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Pay drug addicts for vasectomies on the NHS; meat is murder; Lansley: let patients choose where they die

By Ian Quinn

Our roundup of health news headlines on Tuesday 19 October.

The prospect of drug addicts picking up cash payments in return for being sterilised whips up a storm of controversy in today's papers.

A 38-year-old man has become the first Briton to accept £200 from a controversial US charity, after having a vasectomy on the NHS.

Project Prevention has already paid more than 1,200 people in America to do likewise, with supporters arguing it is a snip to prevent undesirable parents continuing their line.

However, the idea, which would also see women offered money for sterilisation, has been branded immoral by other charities.

The Guardian quotes the BMA as saying it ‘does not have a view' on the issue, so it must be about the only one.

The issue certainly attracts more attention in the nationals than the latest announcements in the biggest set of health reforms ever to face the NHS.

Even then plans for a massive shake up of out-of-hours care are passed over as the papers manage to find a few column inches to concentrate on plans to allow more people to die at home rather than in hospital, as part of Andrew Lansley's proposals to extend patient choice.

‘We want to go further than simply offering people a choice of hospital. Patients should have choice at every stage of the journey,' says the health secretary, although quite how the any willing provider policy when apply when people make it to the pearly gates remains to be seen.

Patients will get there quicker if they continue to eat too much meat, according to the Independent, which claims the UK could prevent 45000 premature deaths a year if we weren't such a bunch of carnivores.

The paper reports the waif-like former CMO, Sir Liam Donaldson, as warning: ‘Our diet is warming the planet. It is also damaging our health.'

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