Councils have warned Britain is facing a care crisis [Image: Unattributed].

The research found that the Tory-led governments of recent years had failed to invest in health and social care.

NHS expenditure has failed to keep pace with demand – as we all knew it would, because funding has fallen, in real terms, ever since the Tories returned to government in 2010.

And councils have seen a 17 per cent decrease in spending on services for the elderly.

Oxford University’s Professor Danny Dorling, whose expertise in these matters is second to none, has said the government has not even bothered to estimate the number of deaths that this de-funding has caused and has refused to take responsibility.

His words were confirmed by a Department of Health spokesperson, who denied responsibility.

According to the DoH, the research reflects the personal bias of those who carried it out, because “every year there is significant fluctuation in reported excess deaths”, and because the NHS budget has risen.

The spokesperson’s comment is, of course – and as we have come to expect from the Conservative Government – blinkered, arrogant, nonsense. It is an insult to our intelligence.

The research has taken account of average age-specific death rates, so it will have compensated for any fluctuations.

And spending on the NHS has not increased in real terms, despite the claimed £15 billion investment.

Let’s all bear in mind these facts:

“The only reason there is a humanitarian crisis in the NHS is underfunding by the Conservative Party in government. They will have inflicted nearly £40 billion of cuts by 2020, and have already passed on around £20 billion of funding to private companies, much of which will be transferred to shareholders’ bank accounts as profit, rather than having anything to do with treatment of illness.”

We can see that £15 billion of investment isn’t going to reverse the effects of up to £60 billion of cuts.

Possibly the worst point to make about this Torygraph report of the issue is that no attempt was made to fact-check the Health Department spokesperson’s claim. If that had happened, the story would have been much bigger.

Cuts to social care budgets and the “widespread failure” of NHS services may have fuelled the biggest rise in death rates for 50 years, research by Oxford University suggests.

The study said an “unprecedented” spike in mortality – with 30,000 excess deaths in 2015 – could be linked to budget reductions for councils, and a rapid deterioration in performance by health services.

Researchers said increases in death rates were likely to continue, with recent levels the highest they have been for three years, without “urgent intervention” to boost funding for health and social care.

But the Department of Health last night disputed the findings, accusing report authors of “personal bias” and ignoring regular fluctuations.

Researchers from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of Oxford and Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council found a steep rise in death rates in 2015, amounting to the greatest percentage increase since 1968.

Source: Care cuts may have fuelled largest rise in death rates for 50 years 

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