Lose Weight Before You Are Allowed An Operation
Smokers needing operations would have to try to quit smoking under Cardiff and Vale health board plans.
Obese people will have to complete weight loss programmes before they are considered for things like bariatric surgery if proposals by a Welsh health board are approved. Cardiff and Vale University Health Board also says requiring smokers to go on courses to help them give up before surgery may save over £400,000.
It would not apply to cancer patients or people needing emergency treatment. The board would have to cut costs by £90m to break even in the next financial year.
“Whilst the increased availability of courses for smoking and obesity is to be welcomed, I am concerned that failure to participate in these will be used as an excuse to delay operations for patients in need of treatment” Andrew RT Davies, Leader, Welsh assembly Conservatives
Welsh Conservatives said it showed the NHS “needs an urgent transfusion of cash”. Members of the health board will be asked to approve measures to address “lifestyle risk factors” at a meeting next Thursday, 28 March. Any smokers must have been offered, accepted and completed smoking cessation programmes before they can be listed for elective surgery.
The move would save an estimated £41,941 to £437,650 a year.