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March 21, 2008

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Paul Flynn

Thanks Greg. I had not seen the Canadian story. The UK cannot fund a health service for the world - or even just Africa.

There is a concentration of laudable compassion on one patient. The outcry is understanable but not rational.

In the Congo this month, if it's like the last 36 months, 4,500 people died of the consequences of war. No TV cameras reported any of them to us.

Greg

Any wealthy country with a relatively socialized system of healthcare is going to have to deal with these issues - they are all going to have illegal immigrants and a proportion of those are going to become ill, and some of those illnesses are going to be expensive.

As far as I can remember Canada beat you to the debate on this topic by about a year:

http://www.canadafreepress.com/2007/weinreb011507.htm

I suppose the brutal fact of the matter is that the NHS has finite resources, (isn't that what NICE is all about, if you're a cynic) and if you make an exception for one unentitled person, where do you draw the line? There are an awful lot of people from the third world in need of medical treatment and no means of accessing it in their own countries - which government wants to be seen advertising free treatment for foreigners?

It's tricky decisions like this that make me incredibly glad that someone else needs to make the call!

Happy Easter!

Greg

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