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Short-term thinking 'leads to more illness'.

Byline: DAVID CLEGG Political Editor

SHORT-TERM political thinking means there aren't enough public health policies to prevent illness, MSPs will suggest today.

An inquiry by the health and sport committee has found the NHS is overreliant on tackling problems rather than preventing them from happening.

And MSPs are worried political pressures are stopping health boards from focusing on prevention because it takes longer for such policies to yield results.

The report says about 40 per cent of cancers are attributable to preventable risk factors which could be addressed through behavioural change.

But it notes the "political cycle" may be playing a part in stopping public health policy focus on this. It says: "The benefits from preventative spending can take a long time to realise and this could reduce the incentive for governments to invest. We have been provided with little evidence of any such activity in our scrutiny of health boards."

The report looked at preventative action on Type 2 diabetes, substance misuse, sexual health, detecting cancer early, neurological conditions among others.

Committee convener Lewis Macdonald said: "It is imperative focus is prioritised on preventing people becoming ill with diseases we know are avoidable."

CAPTION(S):

REPORT Lewis Macdonald

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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Nov 12, 2018
Words:199
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