medical rationingThe allocation of scarce or inadequate medical resources to an ever-expanding and increasingly-demanding population of patients. The avoidance of rationing (in the sense of denying essential treatment to a proportion of patients) is currently a major preoccupation of the medical profession and has led to healthy expansion in the used of specialist nurses, nurse practitioners, nurse prescribing, TELEMEDICINE and the increasing of the clinical scope of paramedical personnel of all kinds. In a tax-funded health system, in a context of ever-increasing treatment modalities, some form of rationing is inevitable. In Britain, this unpopular and thankless duty falls to the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE).
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005