PMCCPMCCPMCC

Search tips
Search criteria 

Advanced

 
Logo of bmjThe BMJ
 
BMJ. 1996 March 16; 312(7032): 670–674.
PMCID: PMC2350498

Health care rationing: the public's debate.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE--To elicit the views of a large nationally representative sample of adults on priorities for health services. DESIGN--An interview survey based on a random sample of people aged 16 and over in Great Britain taken by the Office of Population Censuses and Surveys. SUBJECTS--The response rate to the survey was 75%, and the total number of adults interviewed was 2005. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--A priority ranking exercise of health services supplemented with attitude questions about priorities, who should set priorities, and budget allocation. RESULTS--The results of the main priority ranking exercise of 12 health services showed that the highest priority (rank 1) was accorded to "treatments for children with life threatening illness," the next highest priority (rank 2) was accorded to "special care and pain relief for people who are dying." The lowest priorities (11 and 12) were given to "treatment for infertility" and "treatment for people aged 75 and over with life threatening illness." Most respondents thought that surveys like this one should be used in the planning of health services. CONCLUSIONS--The public prioritise treatments specifically for younger rather than older people. There is some public support for people with self inflicted conditions (for example, through tobacco smoking) receiving lower priority for care, which raises ethical issues.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (1.0M), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Ham C. Health care rationing. BMJ. 1995 Jun 10;310(6993):1483–1484. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Richardson A, Charny M, Hanmer-Lloyd S. Public opinion and purchasing. BMJ. 1992 Mar 14;304(6828):680–682. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Murray SA, Tapson J, Turnbull L, McCallum J, Little A. Listening to local voices: adapting rapid appraisal to assess health and social needs in general practice. BMJ. 1994 Mar 12;308(6930):698–700. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from The BMJ are provided here courtesy of BMJ Publishing Group