Opinion  

Sick? You will be…

Financial Adviser

It never fails to surprise the way that the pharmaceutical industry and doctors combine to medicalise every aspect of our lives.

Even when we are not aware that we are ill, doctors and their leaders have now taken it upon themselves to test all middle-aged men and women for dementia, on the grounds that if one lives long enough to be middle-aged in this day and age then one must be losing control of one’s mental faculties.

Of course, it does not come free – family doctors get an honorarium of £55 for every case they correctly diagnose.

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Call me a cynic, but I can imagine the number of dementia cases in two, three, four years’ time, caught in the early stages, rising exponentially, and with it a higher and higher medical bill for the NHS.

This is but the latest in a long list of ordinary activities and aspects of our social lives that the juggernaut that is the pharmaceutical industry is trying to manipulate in an attempt to convince us that we need some expensive medicine to overcome, or just control, our new illnesses.

We do not want to throw out the baby with the bathwater, and advances in medical science over the years have given us a quality of life that our forebears could not have imagined, from the wonders of antibiotics to keyhole surgery.

And the best of the protection providers have made allowances for all this in their various propositions on the market.

But talk to the average protection adviser: the service they and their clients most want to see from the family doctor is simply medical reports delivered in a timely manner.

Then again, there is no big fee for this service and, if a client has one of the top end protection products, then s/he may not have to seek the services of the family GP or even the local NHS hospital, unless it is in an emergency.