The Independent

Cataracts, hips, knees and tonsils: NHS begins rationing operations
The Independent

Hip replacements, cataract surgery and tonsil removal are among operations now being rationed in a bid to save the NHS money.

Two-thirds of health trusts in England are rationing treatments for « non-urgent » conditions as part of the drive to reduce costs in the NHS by £20bn over the next four years. One in three primary-care trusts (PCTs) has expanded the list of procedures it will restrict funding to in the past 12 months.

Doctors are known to be concerned about how the new rationing is working – and how it will affect their relationships with patients.

Birmingham is looking at reducing operations in gastroenterology, gynaecology, dermatology and orthopaedics. Parts of east London were among the first to introduce rationing, where some patients are being referred for homeopathic treatments instead of conventional treatment.