England’s deprived areas register 30% more COVID deaths this year

England’s deprived areas register 30% more COVID deaths this year
The poorest areas of England have reportedly registered nearly 30% more COVID deaths since the turn of the year.

This reinforces the concern that the poor communities will face the brunt of the disease under the administration’s plans for living with COVID. Out of the 7,053 deaths recorded over the six weeks since January 1, nearly 589 (22.5%) were from the poorest 20% of the nation in comparison to 1,188 (16.8%) in the least deprived 20% region.

Ministers have been notified that these inequalities will only broaden as the government scales back mandated isolation and free testing and cancels sick payments for people suffering from COVID.

The figures are only available till February 11, and they will potentially underestimate the scale of COVID disparities; the poorest areas in England are generally younger whereas the older population, who are more vulnerable to the virus, primarily reside in the least deprived areas. Nevertheless, the most deprived parts of England still register a higher mortality rate.

Wes Streeting, the Shadow Health Secretary of the Labour party expressed that these unfortunate disparities could have been resolved had the administration considered the COVID-19 pandemic as a wake-up call. Instead, he pointed out that the Conservatives are being irresponsible by ending free testing and removing sick pay.

According to an analysis performed by Colin Angus, the health inequalities modeler at the University of Sheffield, nearly 25 percent of hospital and at-home deaths are occurring in England’s most deprived areas.

Contrastingly, these areas have a lower proportion of care home deaths owing to their younger population base.

The Health Foundation stated that these are concerning figures and showcase the disproportionate impact of the coronavirus. Angus added that removing mandatory self-isolation and free mass testing at a time of high prevalence of COVID infections will have a severe impact on poor communities.

Last week, over 2 million people were infected by the virus according to the latest data from the Office for National Statistics.

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