Ministers pledge £4bn to tackle smoking, drinking and obesity
(Comments at the end of the report are by Christine Cote)
Health white paper hands responsibility to councils as health experts question ‘nudge’ tactics and lack of detail
Sarah Boseley, Health editor
guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 30 November 2010 19.08 GMT
The government today promised ringfenced funding of £4bn to improve the nation’s health by tackling issues such as smoking, obesity and excessive drinking.
But the much-heralded white paper on public health, which hands money and responsibility to local authorities, received a cool welcome from some experts, who warned that the government’s preferred option of “nudging” people into good habits may not work.
“We agree that ‘nudging’ people to be healthy may be more effective than only telling them how to live their lives,” said Dr Vivienne Nathanson, of the British Medical Association. “However, if people live in an environment where they are surrounded by fast-food advertising and glamorous alcohol marketing, nudging will have a limited effect. We need an environment that helps us make healthy choices and sometimes tougher action is needed to achieve this.” She urged decisive action immediately to ban cigarette displays in shops.
Today’s document centred on structural change, handing responsibility and power to local authorities, together with the ringfencing of the budget. Under the previous government, public health funds were raided in a frantic attempt to pull cash-strapped hospitals out of deficit. [???!!!! Letting hospitals waste 4 Billions for harming healthy people with vaccines?]
The money promised, although it is said to be only a baseline, is just a fraction of total NHS spending, which is more than £100bn and expected to rise to £114bn over the next four years. Part will go to local authorities, while the rest will be spent by a new central body, Public Health England, which will organise national programmes such as immunisation and screening.
The money will also fund research into ways of persuading people (1) to take better care of their health.
“People’s health and wellbeing will be at the heart of everything local councils do,” said the health secretary, Andrew Lansley. “It’s nonsense to think that health can be tackled on its own.
“Directors of public health will be able to champion local co-operation so that health issues are considered alongside housing, transport and education.”
Detail on specific interventions will not be available until next year. Plain packaging for cigarettes and minimum pricing for alcohol are subject to consultation, although the Treasury announced a hike in the duty on high-strength beer. Beer stronger than 7.5% alcohol by volume will be subject to the higher duty from next autumn, while tax on low-alcohol beers with a strength of 2.8% or less will be reduced.
Prof Ian Gilmore, chairman of the alcohol committee of the Royal College of Physicians, pointed out on Radio 4’s World at One that only 1% of beers had 7.5% alcohol. He called the government’s measures “window-dressing”, adding that it “looks less like the ‘big society’ and more like big business”.
Five networks, on food, alcohol, physical activity, health at work(2) and behaviour change, where industry is sitting down with health department officials and the voluntary sector to discuss changes in practice, have yet to report. A “public health responsibility deal” will be launched early next year. The white paper says there will be moves on reducing salt in food, better food labelling, and the “promotion of more socially responsible retailing and consumption of alcohol”.
The president of the Royal College of Physicians welcomed ringfencing and the attempt “to bring to the field a much-needed strategic focus and coherence”. But, said Sir Richard Thompson, the RCP was disappointed by a lack of detail, especially on how to deal with alcohol misuse, obesity and smoking. “We wait keenly to see if the promised subsequent strategies will fill in the gaps.”
He warned that voluntary agreements with industry would not necessarily deliver. “On a whole raft of issues it has been clearly demonstrated that a laissez- faire attitude does not work, either in terms of promoting responsible behaviour among the manufacturers and retailers of potentially harmful products or in creating an environment that would allow individuals to make healthier choices.”(3)
Comment by Christine Cote:
(1) They “persuade” people by exciting the hate and despise of their beloved against them and fORCING them to visit the “Health ” clases, and obey the “dotor” and follow the “treatment”
(2): In some insurance groups now, in Austria (SVA, GKK; D.A.S) , they recruit “health firms” that will “help” to forbid tobacco, alcohol and rich food at work and to “treat” the employees, and TRAIN employees during their breaks ! Forced fitness training! (this is already common in the USA : see for instance Clarian Health in Detroit, 2007 : there they even cut their salary from 5 to 20$ for each Health “Failure”.)
(3) he means here the tobacco, food and drinks industry but NOT Big Pharma or the Chemistry cartel ! They first expropriate and persecute the other industries, then also the retailers and consumers…
Everything about the killer vaccines: beware of the alcohol, obesity and tobacco vaccines !
Anti smoking vaccine gets 10 millions booster shot:
About 272,000 results
They even invented an obesity “virus” so te can declare obesity (from BMI 25) a “pandemic”
About 53,400 results
Is obesity contagious ? (This means any person or child living around Fatties belongs to a “risk group” => Mass vaccination)
About 205,000 results
About 2,520,000 results
My anti-alcohol vaccine expired, can I drink now? [you can see how it “works!”]
The cocaine Vaccine for control of the masses?
Autism linked to vaccines:
Pfizer Plans to Profit from Autism – Pfizer purchased Wyeth, whose Prevnar vaccine (Prevenar in the UK) put it into the vaccination market. That product contains aluminum, a neurotoxin suspected of being tied to the epidemic of autism.
So, we have a company that is knowingly entering a business that causes the disease it will then treat—not cure, only treat.
Vaccine Adjuvants: The Stealth Health Threat—Chronic disease rates are rising. Asthma has become pandemic in children. New neurological disorders are being described.
More about Pfizer, Chantix, Zyban and other poisons
1.8.2009 FDA demands strongest safety warning for Champix (Chantix, Varenicline, J&J) and Zyban (Bupropion). The EME, the AGES, the AFFSSAPS,
And many, many, many more recent Big Pharma’s crimes against humanity