NHS must spend more11th February 2010
A government-commissioned review of health inequalities in England has concluded that the NHS must spend more money on preventing illness.
In his report, epidemiologist Sir Michael Marmot from University College London makes a number of recommendations designed to improve the health of the nation.
He says the minimum wage should be increased from £5.80 an hour to enable all to have a healthy diet, exercise and fast internet access and that every child should be given the best start in life.
The report shows while life expectancy has risen, there are still inequalities with those in the poorest parts of the country likely to die seven years earlier and live more of their lives being unwell.
The Marmot Review says more than 200,000 early deaths could be avoided if inequalities, which cost £33bn a year in lost productivity, were reduced.
The report calls for NHS spending on preventing illness to be much higher than the current 4%, with more money going to initiatives such as providing statins and helping people to stop smoking.
Health secretary Andy Burnham said: "It's not right that where we live can dictate the state of our health. The report shows us there is still much to do - so we are looking to all corners of the community to work together."
The Royal College of Nursing said the nation should not tolerate the differences in life expectancy highlighted by the Marmot Review and that it was important to “avoid missing the window of opportunity in a child's early years” to nurture good health.
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Title: NHS must spend more
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 14026
Date Added: 11th Feb 2010