26 October 2020
A new coalition of nearly 80 organisations, including the Alcohol Health Alliance UK, has been launched to press for urgent action to address health inequalities.
The Inequalities in Health Alliance (IHA) is demanding a cross-government strategy to reduce health inequalities: unfair and avoidable differences in health across the population, and between different groups within society. Health inequalities, which may involve differences in access to health care or the standards of care available, can damage quality of life and even shorten life expectancy.
Alcohol harm cuts across society but the worst impacts are experienced by the poorest. The latest findings from the Crime Survey for England and Wales show that lower socioeconomic groups experience higher incidence and prevalence rates of alcohol-related violence, including domestic and acquaintance violence.
RCP President Professor Andrew Goddard said: “Health inequalities are not an issue to be addressed once the pandemic is behind us; a focus on them is one way in which we can tackle COVID-19 in the short term, and help to reduce its impact upon the health and prosperity of the UK in the longer term.
“That such a large number and wide range of organisations should come together to form the Health Inequalities Alliance is a powerful statement that now is the perfect time to reduce the gap in healthy life expectancy by taking the right steps to reset the NHS, make social care sustainable, and reinvigorate our approach to public health.”
Find out more about the Inequalities in Health Alliance.