Should Fertility Clinics Stock Porn?S

A think tank is criticizing British IVF clinics for providing clients with porn — apparently because it leads to "adultery of the mind."

According to the Independent, 202health.org, which describes itself as "an independent, grass-roots, think tank for health and technology interested in realistic solutions," is unhappy with the amount of porn currently doled out by the British National Health Service. The think tank's survey found that 33 of 93 NHS trusts provided porn at their IVF clinics, with about half receiving donations (can Brits write this off on their taxes?) and the other half buying the material at a total cost of £700 (about $1080) a year. The money isn't the 2020health's biggest beef, although they do call out "the Royal Liverpool Women's NHS Foundation Trust who frittered £7,350 on a media suite for watching pornographic DVDs." Rather, they're concerned for the well-being of clinic employees and patients. Julia Manning writes in 2020health's report,

Pornography strips women of full human status and reduces them to sex objects. It gives permission to its consumers to treat women as they are treated in porn. And the reality of porn today is that it increasingly uses younger girls and is more violent and extreme. 77% of the NHS workforce in the UK is female and they should never have to work in an environment that endorses pornography, whether directly or indirectly.

Of porn's impact on male patients, Manning writes,

For the NHS to unnecessarily introduce addictive material — a medium that is implicated as causing difficulties forming intimate relationships — to patients during their treatment beggars belief. And to do this at a time when men are particularly vulnerable, already facing the emotional and physical pressures of possible infertility, is inexcusable.

She even speculates that "the NHS has been taken advantage of by publishers of porn who know the addictive nature of their material and have seen the potential for capturing a new market." The idea that evil pornographers are trying to capture the hearts and cocks of the sperm sample set is a little extreme, as is Manning's assertion that providing porn at IVF clinics constitutes "the encouragement of ‘adultery of the mind.'" Her concern for the work environment created by porn is more legit, but it seems like this could be addressed simply by keeping the material in a private place where only patients have access to it. It's unclear if IVF porn is poised to become Britain's version of the death panel, or if Palin et al will use it as an example of the wastefulness and immorality of nationalized healthcare. But at least at this point, 2020health's objections seem like a tempest in a specimen jar.

NHS Criticised For Supplying Pornography To IVF Couples [Independent]
Who Said Pornography Was Acceptable In The Workplace? An Investigation Into The Use Of Pornography By NHS Fertility Clinics [2020health]

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