Thursday, May 30, 2024
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No ceasefire in sight for the health and safety warriors


LAST Friday saw the launch of the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID) to mark a ‘new era of public health’ whereby ‘putting prevention at the heart to help people live longer, healthier and happier lives’ will ‘level up’ the UK.

Using Government’s Covid-19 response as a barometer, OHID’s ethos appears rather more fanatical than the benign objectives suggest. One could be forgiven for thinking that they exist merely to pour additional fuel on to a blazing fire of interventionist public health measures already well out of control: after all, Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty is providing OHID’s leadership. Responsible for the rebranding of Pfizer’s Cominarty from Covid-19 vaccine to some sort of juvenile antidepressant, he should not be trusted with a toothbrush, let alone a more expanded role in public health.

OHID’s aim is to identify trends, based on geographical location, ‘of a person’s life expectancy and the years they can expect to live a healthy life’ and implement the appropriate preventive healthcare measures so as to, you guessed it, reduce pressure on the NHS.

It appears that after a year and a half of bowing to the vacuous maxim ‘Protect the NHS’ the public will now be asked to take their hypochondriacal adherence to Covid-19 directives and apply it to a plethora of other domains in defence of the same agitprop institution, the most pressing of which OHID have identified as tobacco, alcohol and recreational drug use, obesity, work, housing and education – in short, life itself.

To tackle the further rebranding of Covid-19 from foreign invader to home-grown terror cell, OHID will work collaboratively with ‘the NHS, academia, scientists, research and industry’ to apply ‘cutting edge science, technology, evidence and data to target support where it is most needed’. I don’t entertain high hopes for this ambitious-sounding, clearly bogus humanitarian credo, as all the entities mentioned have become state-controlled, and although throughout the pandemic they have indeed collectively identified the most vulnerable of society, they have also unequivocally failed to offer them targeted support, using them instead for target practice.

OHID will address the ‘unacceptable health disparities that exist across the country and reduce the pressure on the health and care system as work is done to reduce the backlog’. This all sounds rather convoluted and expensive when for no cost at all and with negligible effort, the office could simply demand that all surgeries, hospitals, care homes and other healthcare settings resume normal service, or better still, stop declaring hysterical health emergencies where there are none in the first place, but I suppose one should not look a Trojan gifthorse in the mouth. 

Vaccine passports were a once ludicrous and unimaginable concept, and yet we find ourselves on the brink of their introduction. What kind of similarly fanciful yet now feasible additional controls might we expect from OHID, based upon their already clumsy-sounding and corruptible social philosophy? Rationed alcohol? A weekly sugar allowance? Cholesterol-level-based access to Deliveroo?

In all likelihood OHID will be pivotal in edging us closer to a digital identification system more comprehensive in scope than we might have thought possible: a health passport encompassing not only one’s Covid-19 vaccination status but potentially also one’s body mass index, and lung, liver and artery performance. The poor will be at a disadvantage from the start, immediately the most exposed to this revamped meddling and modelling.

This might all sound rather fantastical, yet we have only to cast our minds back a matter of months to when we were being told how many people we could have round, to know that anything is possible in this new age of militarised public health and wellbeing controls.

OHID are not the only new kids on the health block. ‘As Public Health England is replaced, the new UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) will have a laser-like focus on health protection.’

The UKHSA also became fully operational as of October 1, and according to the government website have been built on ‘the legacy of Public Health England, NHS Test and Trace and the Joint Biosecurity Centre to help keep the nation safe’.

SAGE, SPI-B, SPI-M, NHS T&T and now the UKHSA and OHID: targeting the deprived oppressed (everyone) with the hostile lasers of their preventive health and safety war, and with no ceasefire in sight.

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