Scottish Government statistics published this week have revealed the scale of persistent health inequalities in Scotland.
The reports shows:
- The gap in premature mortality rates has increased to its highest point since 2008.
- In 1997, premature mortality rates were three times higher in the most deprived areas compared to the least deprived; in 2018, rates were four times higher in the most deprived areas.
- The gap for drug-related hospital admissions has increased in each of the last five years and it has almost tripled since the start of the time series in 1996/97.
Statistics published by ISD have also revealed that Scots in deprived areas are 52 per cent more likely to die from a stroke.
MSP Jackie Baillie said that the shameful record of worsening inequality is the result of years of Tory austerity and SNP complacency, and underlines the need for more investment in our communities.
She added: ““This persistent level of health inequality shames a nation that is as wealthy as ours.
“The data consistently shows that people living in the poorest areas are more likely to have poor health and die younger.
“It beggars belief that in 2020, your postcode can still be the determining factor in your quality of life.
“This is a result of years of complacency from SNP Ministers and a lack of investment in our communities in Dumbarton, the Vale of Leven, Helensburgh and Lomond.
“This must serve as a wake-up call to the Health Secretary [Jeane Freeman] to ramp up efforts across government to end these shameful health inequalities.”