Comedy healthcare class for mentally ill blasted for being unethical

By | July 6, 2010 at 11:08 am | 3 comments | News | Tags: , ,

We’ve all heard stories of political scandals, and executives spending non-profit money in ludicrous ways, right? Well, National Health Service (NHS) – a publicly funded healthcare system within the United Kingdom – has been spending thousands of taxpayers’ money on training jobless women to become stand-up comediennes.

The course – produced by a group called by Women and Theatre – is specifically aimed at women who are at risk of developing mental health problems. It may seem logical on paper, what with many comedians expressing how stand-up is like therapy. The problem is, however, all the class participants haven’t had to show any proof the aforementioned possible development of mental issues.

Chief executive of the watchdog group Taxpayers’ Alliance Mark Elliot has lashed out against this initiative telling England’s Daily Mail, “It is ridiculous to spend NHS resources on something like stand-up comedy. It would be laughable, if it wasn’t for the fact that this money is sorely needed elsewhere. It is crazy to have a health service that runs stand-up comedy classes while people die for lack of funding for medicines.”

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Nate Billy

  • http://www.adamkomar.com Adam Komar

    Obviously, Mark Elliot has never heard the cliche, “Laughter is the best medicine.” Someone had to say it.

  • D Perudo

    Surely there is the scope to consider the health service as a health service…as in promoting health….and not just dealing with the after effects of an unequal society through purely pathologised and clinical based costly approaches… is there an evidence base in reducing mental health concerns through social engagement? Is there an evidence base in reducing mental well being issues through creative writing? Is there a direct link between literacy and better mental well being outcomes? is there a link between self esteem, confidence building and better mental health? is there a link between
    humour and positive mental well-being? What about the costs of unemployment, self harm, suicide, poor family support, depression?….. hmmmmm….suddenly doesn’t sound so ludicrous!….and isn’t there a need to reduce the stigma attached to poor mental health, mental health problems and social class?….doesn’t the equalities bill push for that?…. outside the box please.

  • Sarah

    I absolutely agree, laughing can definitely heal people!