Health Secretary Andrew Lansley has hit out at Labour for producing "fictional" evidence purporting to demonstrate that health services in England are being rationed for financial reasons.
As Mr Lansley took MPs' questions on 17 July 2012, he reiterated a pledge that the government would "not allow NHS commissioners to impose blanket bans" on treatments solely on the basis of cost.
But shadow health secretary Andy Burnham suggested that he had uncovered proof that the government's ban had failed.
"NHS Sussex have imposed severe restrictions that contradict his own department's guidance called Action on Cataracts, and this has seen the number of cataract operations in Sussex fall from 5,646 in 2010 to 4,215 in 2011," he said.
"Does he consider this fair to older people, and will he now take the action his department has promised?" Mr Burnham asked.
The health secretary said he would look into this specific case.
"But I have to tell the honourable gentleman," Mr Lansley added, "that he wrote to me with a document that purported to have a whole series of examples from across the country, most of which turned out to be fictional."
He reaffirmed: "Any treatment must be clinically determined, in the interest of patient."