National health care [was Re: Medical technology and cryonics]

dave budd zlsiida at fs1.mcc.ac.uk
Thu Jun 4 10:55:31 EST 1992

In article <196 at sftwks.UUCP> bradbury at sftwks.UUCP (Robert Bradbury) writes:

>This discussion started out involving the rights of individuals to spend
>their money on cryonic preservation and the degree to which limited research
>funds should be spent on cryobiology.  In the bionet.molbio.ageing group there
>is a consensus (among some of us) that funds should be spent to reduce
>the overall rate of aging, thereby reducing disease incidence and long
>term health care costs.  This lead to some discussion of the best way to
>allocate health care resources and a debate over who is entitled to them.
>This is fundamentally related to the issue of national health care.

In the UK there is the concept of QALYs (I think; =QuAlity of Life*Years)
It's a measure of the 'efficiency' of various medical treatments based on 
the expected improvement in quality of life (hard to measure!), the extra 
years the patient will live (not so hard to measure - lots of stats on
treatments), and the cost.  Now the guys who thought it up have to get the 
admin people to go along with it.  Wherever funding is limited, hard 
choices must be made.  At least this is a rational and quantifiable way 
of making those choices.  And of course, in the UK, we still have most of 
our National Health  service left, so poor people get equal bites of the 

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+-------------------------------------------ISIHAC, BBC Radio4--------+                                                                    
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