Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters NHS health checks

NHS health checks are totally unscientific

BMJ 2015; 350 doi: (Published 24 February 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h990
  1. Hazel Thornton, honorary visiting fellow, University of Leicester1
  1. 1Colchester CO5 7EA,UK
  1. hazelcagct{at}

It is difficult, well nigh impossible, to undo an ineffective programme after it has been set up. Those involved—the government in this case—automatically adopt a defensive position so as not to disappoint the people they have promised to help. They promise “risk assessment” to help prevent heart disease, stroke, diabetes, kidney disease, and …

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