Patients are being denied mental health care, new hips and knees, and drugs to boost their recovery from illnesses including cancer as the NHS increasingly rations treatments to try to overcome its growing cash crisis.
A survey of doctors reveals that three-quarters said they had seen care rationed in their area over the last year – including treatments such as speech therapy, operations to remove varicose veins, Botox to help children with cerebral palsy move better and even potentially life-saving stem cell transplant surgery.
Disabled children were having to use ill-fitting wheelchairs, teenage girls were banned from accessing medication to tackle male-style hair growth and women had been unable to access surgery to have breast enlargements or reductions as a result of growing restrictions across England, the research concluded.
Medical organisations said the findings showed patients were paying the price because an underfunded NHS was having to force them to wait for care or deny it altogether.
Full story in The Guardian 8 December 2015