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Austerity kills people

The stark reality of a decade of austerity is laid bare, and the truth told.  Austerity kills people.  For the first time since the beginning of the 20th century, the improvements in life expectancy have ground to a halt.

This is the conclusion of the latest Health Review of England, published by the Institute of Health Equality.

Let's not beat about the bush.  This is politics.  It is the result of a decade of the most brutal right-wing Tory rule in the United Kingdom - and it is set to continue.   The needs of Brexit means that for all the promises made by Boris Johnson in the general election, austerity is set to continue.

The poorest are being made to pay, not just for the cost of the financial crisis, but also now for Brexit.

"From the beginning of the 20th century, England experienced continuous improvements in life expectancy but from 2011 these improvements slowed dramatically, almost grinding to a halt."
 Of course, it is difficult to demonstrate the direct causal link between austerity and the changes in population health.  But it is difficult to conclude other than that it has been the major factor.  Austerity has increased poverty for many and has put our health and social care system into crises.  This cannot be without impact.  Or, as the report states:

"austerity has adversely affected the social determinants that impact on health in the short, medium and long term."

The saddest aspect of all is that this will be carried through with great cost to the lives of our children.   First the coalition government and then under the Tories alone, this damage has been done, and it need not have been if the warnings of the Marmot report had been acted on.

Savage cuts - 70% since 2009/10 -  to central funding of local authorities have affected their ability to provide services vital for the nation's health.  This has had the greatest impact on the poorest areas.

Austerity kills people. It is a waste of lives and it is unsound economics.  An unhealthy population is an unproductive one and increases the burdens on overstretched health and social services.








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