Plumbers, heating engineers and meter installers should alert the authorities when they visit a “dangerously cold home” in order to help reduce the toll of winter deaths, new NHS guidelines say.
Because the news that your gas fitter or plumber might be spying on your living arrangements for the government isn’t of any consequence, is it?
It’s to help, you see.
David Sloan, co-chair of the Nice committee which developed the guidance, published on Thursday, said: “Doctors, nurses and other health staff prevent and treat illnesses every day but we are suggesting that thinking about the health effects of cold homes is also their business. This new Nice guideline says that health, social care and other professionals should always take a minute to consider the health risk of cold homes when in contact with patients and clients, and know what steps to take to get help to the people who need it. Action on cold homes can prevent early deaths.”
Yes, of course. This is purely beneficial. We’d never extend it to other purposes, once we got our foot in the door, would we?
Here’s a thought – if this is so altruistic, why not have all these plumbers, heating engineers and gas fitters carry a stack of little leaflets on where to get help to hand out to people? That way, they get to use it if they need it, and the householder gets to seek help if they want to, and the government doesn’t get a compliant army habituated to the idea of snooping.