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Unhealthy Patients Could Soon Be Denied Treatment

Unhealthy Britons could be denied free NHS treatments in the next decade, a report warned.

Experts told the researchers they predicted treatments including IVF and fertility treatment, dental treatment, obesity surgery and drugs, dementia treatment and complementary therapies will no longer be free in 2020.

People could also face penalties if they refuse to change their unhealthy ways,  according to predictions made by Friends Provident and the Future Foundation.

The report - Visions of Britain 2020 - maps out the potential impact of people eating unhealthily, exercising too little and drinking too much alcohol despite Government health campaigns.

Dr Sarah Brewer, a GP and medical journalist who was consulted for the report, said: 'We all know that we should follow a healthy low-fat diet, eat at least five (portions of fruit and vegetables) a day etc.

'But how many actually do anything about it? Unless an unhealthy diet and lifestyle is penalised in some way no-one will change.'

Trevor Matthews, chief executive officer of Friends Provident, said: 'We all know that the NHS will probably change in years to come, but some of the behaviours identified in the report mean that these changes will be much harder on us than what we expect them to be.

'We all need to adopt healthier lifestyles or else risk being faced with penalties in the years ahead.'


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