Magazine article Public Finance

Funding 'Failing to Reduce Health Inequality'

Magazine article Public Finance

Funding 'Failing to Reduce Health Inequality'

Article excerpt

Billions of pounds' worth of spending targeted on reducing the health gap between the rich and the poor has led to only patchy improvement across England, the Audit Commission has found.

Healthy balance, a public health expenditure study published on March 11, also said that Whitehall had issued 'too much policy from too many different sources for people in the field to keep up with'.

The commission estimated that £21bn was allocated to primary care trusts to reflect the health needs of deprived populations in 2009/10.

But since 1997 only modest progress at best had been made on indicators such as teenage pregnancy, infant mortality and life expectancy.

Teenage conceptions had dropped by 13% since 1998 - well short of the government's own 50% target. But while there was an increase of 11% in Halton in Cheshire, neighbouring Warrington, whose population has similar characteristics, achieved a cut of 33%. …

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