"Fat tax effective in discouraging unhealthy lifestyle"

12th February 2008, Comments 0 comments

Extra taxes on unhealthy items like alcohol, tobacco and snacks would be a good way to encourage consumers to adopt a healthier lifestyle, says the council for public health.

12 February 2008

UTRECHT - Extra taxes on unhealthy items like alcohol, tobacco and snacks would be a good way to encourage consumers to adopt a healthier lifestyle.

This is just one idea proposed by the Council for Public Health and Health Care (RVZ) in an effort to make people more responsible for their own health.

The council presented the proposals on Tuesday in the publication "Being a good patient." The RVZ especially wants patients to cooperate better with their treatment and make more of an effort to improve their own health.

The RVZ urges that it be possible to scale down treatment if a patient deliberately does not cooperate. A woman would be entitled to fewer IVF treatments for instance if she doesn't stop smoking, a habit which diminishes the chance of successful treatment.

Stopping care entirely would not be so effective, since this might prompt the patient to hide his bad habits.

The council says that a doctor may refuse further assistance if the patient misbehaves. That applies currently for aggressive patients, but not this could also apply for people who ask "too emphatically for a particular treatment" or misbehave otherwise.

If care is stopped, the doctor must however ensure that the patient can go elsewhere for help.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2008]

Subject: Dutch news

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