North West disparity over disability

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Handicapped Accessible sign © Wikipedia

Handicapped Accessible sign © Wikipedia

The Office of National Statistics has released figures that show a large North/South divide, as disabled people living in the North West find that they are more constrained in their daily routines.

The report revealed that people are living in the more deprived North West of England are three times more likely to be impacted negatively by various health issues and disabilities.

Elmbridge, Surrey which is classed as the UK’s Beverly Hills, is the home town of the fewest number of people whose lives are limited by disabilities and illnesses, where fewer than 5% of people describe their situation as limited.

However, more than 16% of residents living in Merseyside described their living situations as ‘limited a lot’ in carrying out their daily routines. People living in the North West are three times more likely to be overcome by a larger range of health issues.

Ian Gibbs, of Daisy UK, a Liverpool-based disability charity told JMU Journalism: “I totally agree that people in this area are overcome by different illness, but I think it has a lot to do with the area, as in Liverpool there are a lot of severely deprived areas, and this does not help people’s health and decision they make.”

The statistics also show a lot about life expectancy in areas of England, residents of the southern wealthier areas can expect to live and be healthier for as much as 18 years longer than people in the more deprived areas of the UK.

As well as life expectancy figures, it also showed that severe health problems were most common among the younger people who are living in the more deprived parts of England, such as the North. It is also said that the findings may suggest a variation in access and levels of healthcare in their areas.

Mr Gibbs told JMU Journalism: “Personally I don’t think it’s got anything to do with healthcare, as any personal experience I have had with the NHS in the Liverpool area have been great, and they have done all they can.

“Obviously there has been a lot of trouble with NHS services in Merseyside, because of trying to meet targets, and that isn’t acceptable, but personally I don’t think it’s got anything to do with NHS. I think it’s more to do with the demographic area.”

About Kirsty McColgan, JMU Journalism