Fuel poverty costing every local Health and Wellbeing Board in England over £27,000 each day
Every local Health and Wellbeing Board in England is spending, on average, over £27,000 each day, or £10million per year on treating patients with health conditions caused or worsened by living in cold, damp housing, a new release by fuel poverty charity National Energy Action (NEA) has been able to reveal.
Cold homes cost health services £3.6 million per day, and in the past four years alone over £5 billion of tax payers’ money has been wasted whilst 117,000 people have died needlessly due to the cold, data supplied by the charity has been able to reveal.
The health impacts caused by cold homes predominantly relate to exacerbating cardiovascular stress. Low temperatures also diminish resistance to infection and encourage damp and mould growth in the home which causes respiratory problems.
Cold indoor conditions have also been linked to poor mental health resulting from anxiety and stress. Social isolation can be exacerbated where the home does not present a welcoming environment and there is evidence that cold homes can reduce educational attainment.
Jenny Saunders, Chief Executive of NEA, commented: “Cold homes are a public health emergency and are dramatically reducing life chances for vulnerable people.
“As well as it being completely unacceptable that in the 21 century people are still becoming ill and dying needlessly because they live in cold homes, treating health-related conditions is also placing a shocking strain on the public purse.”
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