Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Another 'Postcode Lottery' Claim

This time it's the greater availability of muscular dystrophy care for those who happen to live near specialist treatment centres. The constant association of the term 'lottery' with such supposedly unfair geographical discrimination gives actual lotteries a bad name in public discourse.

EDIT (italics above): Thanks for the comment pointing out that I'd actually got the details of the geography the wrong way round. It isn't actually a north south issue, and the particular example cited here is of a treatment centre in Newcastle, as opposed to the absence of such in the south west (I'm sure there must be one near London).

My basic point still stands though: this isn't a lottery - it's not like these treatment centres fall randomly out of the sky; postcodes are distributed geographically and people - if they have the money - can move where they like.

1 comment:

  1. You got the advantage the wrong way around. The people in London are significantly worse off in this case. The whole point of the study was to show that those living near a center of excellence, in this case Newcastle Uni., live around 10 years longer *solely* because they are seen by a specialist who gets them treated at the right time.
    The title lottery is partly correct, you live if you are lucky enough to be in a postcode which is covered by Newcastle Uni.