Tuesday, January 17, 2006

More news from the Department of Psychobabble

A sarcastic post about the British "obesity" campaign from a British doctor

"Greetings comrades and good news from the Health Commissariat. Comrade Flint has been made a Hero of the Soviet Union (third class) for designing and instituting the new five-year plan to help comrade doctors advise patients about obesity".

Meanwhile, back at the coalface, Dr Crippen is looking for his chocolate digestive biscuits that the reception staff have hidden to assist him with his flagging New Year's Resolution.

The National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) is working day and night, on your behalf and at your expense, to formulate a national strategy to help family doctors advise patients who are overweight.

In the House of Commons earlier this month, Comrade Flint, an under secretary of state for health said:

"The Department is developing an obesity care pathway as an interim tool to assist the frontline health professionals in managing overweight and/or obese patients, until the availability of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence's definitive guidance in 2007. As part of the process of developing this tool, early drafts were shared with some potential users to ascertain their views on how it might best be applied."

"An interim obesity care pathway". That sounds good! And in another year or so, we will have the "definitive tool". Wonderful! Hang the expense. This is better than "getting a picture of the night" from Sue and Dave.

Dr Crippen will struggle on with the soon to be out-moded equipment he has used to diagnose obesity for the last twenty years. This is a complex photo-electric receptor apparatus which has integral bionic micro-electronic circuitry calibrated automatically to orientate and binocularly co-ordinate the three-dimensional spatial presentation of the propositus in relationship to a complex wooden matrix specially designed by skilled craftsman to admit and contain all members of the population with guaranteed confidence levels up to and including the mean and three standard deviations of the population norm.

In other words, he glances at the patient as they enter the door, and knows instantly if they are overweight.

Then, in the absence of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence's definitive guidance, he says:

"Gosh, you are bit over weight. Why don't you eat less?"

Is this why we cannot afford to treat breast cancer?

My thanks to Comrade Wat Tyler for drawing my attention to the existence of Caroline Flint.

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