NHS To Number Old People

ELDERLY people in hospital will be referred to by a number under new NHS guidelines.

Instead of calling older patients 'love', 'deary' or any other term that makes them feel cared for, NHS staff must bark the patient's designated serial number and ask them a list of pointed questions.

According to the guidelines a typical scenario would involve a nurse leaning over an elderly patient and shouting, 'number 16, please inform me of the current status of your condition'.

Depending on the response the staff member would then reply 'prepare to be administered with medication' or 'satisfactory, please continue with your recovery'.

Ministers are also considering a proposal to have all geriatric inmates stand by their beds once a day while a pair of snarling Dobermans searches the ward for contraband.

Health secretary Alan Johnson said: "Older people in hospital are always complaining about how the nurses are too friendly, or the way doctors keep asking them how they're feeling as if they actually care.

"One old woman even wrote to me saying she'd been given a lovely cup of tea and a delicious chocolate biscuit and demanded that the nurse responsible be dismissed or, at the very least, pushed under a bus."

Number 1785, a retired school teacher from Woking with a hiatus hernia, said: "I am number 1785. I am moderately well today. Please wheel me towards the lavatory."

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Darling Has Secret Plan To Keep Buggering About

CHANCELLOR Alistair has a secret plan to keep buggering about with the British economy until he finds something that works, it was revealed last night.

A confidential Treasury memo, published on a government website, proposes a series of tax rises and tax cuts introduced for two weeks at a time over the next five years.

The memo suggests a 75% 'supertax' for pantomime stars between December 5th and January 31st, suspending VAT on forks, cutting corporation tax for companies run by men named Ian and increasing child benefit for families who roam the land singing songs and performing magic tricks.

It adds: "Failing that we can just whack up VAT, murder the aristocracy and steal their houses."

The memo also reveals Mr Darling's secret plan to breed unicorns and sell them to Chinese millionaires.

The chancellor would invest public money in up to a dozen unicorn farms across the country churning out thousands of magical horses which would then be vacuum packed and shipped to the Far East.

Mr Darling believes that at £250,000 a unicorn the government could have paid back its £120bn of borrowing by the time Star Trek becomes reality.

The Conservatives last night dismissed the plan as the latest 'government con', insisting there was probably no such thing as unicorns and that it would simply be a load of donkeys with a bread stick glued to their foreheads.