DR Leong has branded one of the five proposals contained in the consultation document on health as inhumane. He said he was staggered by the inclusion of the proposal to provide treatment only for conditions defined as being of high priority, writes Susie Weldon. ''How can they include the prioritisation of treatment approach?'' he said. ''It's inhumane on the side of the patients and on the side of the doctors - how can you ask the health care worker to play God?'' Dr Leong was also critical of the Government's reluctance to spell out the real aim behind the paper, which was to reverse Hong Kong's decades-old policy of free health care. The proposal to link hospital bed fees to operating costs, instead of to food costs, was a radical departure from the Government's policy of free medical treatment. He said he gave full marks to the consultation document for finally admitting that the Government could not carry the entire future cost of health care. ''It has achieved its aim of introducing to the Hong Kong people the concept of the cost of health care,'' he said. ''But, after this, it's all criticism.'' Fellow legislator Peter Wong Hong-yuen queried whether the proposals were adequate to meet future health costs. He said while the Governor last October pledged to boost health spending by 22 per cent in real terms over the next five years, the Hospital Authority planned to increase hospital beds by 41 per cent by the year 2000. Also, the cost of providing in-patient treatment to those aged over 65 would increase by 41 per cent by the year 2001. ''There are lots and lots of problems like this which we haven't even begun to address in that paper,'' he said.