Two rapid responses to the news ‘Government defends NHS health checks for people aged 40-74 but promises evaluation’ (BMJ 2015;350:h581) deserve attention.
When are health checks not screening? And how can a randomised controlled trial suddenly become an ‘epidemiological study’? – Can this convenient name change be due to the uncomfortable questions campaigners have been asking about lack of information, informed consent, ethics and other issues?
Public ignorance of the harms of health checks and screening plays into the hands of those who perpetuate these programmes – and with an election coming up, it seems votes are more importance than lives.