Dickensian Diseases Making Comeback Against Backdrop of Austerity

3 February 2019, 18:37 | Updated: 3 February 2019, 18:53

The Shadow Health Secretary cited a 208% increase in diseases such as scarlet fever amid the austerity policies imposed by the current Conservative government.

There has been a sharp rise in hospital visits for diseases that were common during the Victorian era, such as scarlet fever, whooping cough and gout, research reveals.

Amid this news, Ayesha Hazarika spoke to Jon Ashworth, the Shadow Health Secretary, to discuss this rise in 'Dickensian' diseases.

Mr Ashworth said we had seen a "huge increase" in "diseases from a bygone era" such as scarlet fever, cases in which have increased by 208% since the current Conservative government came in.

The Shadow Health Secretary said that he thought these diseases including cases of malnutrition, had made a comeback "against a backdrop of austerity" and were linked to an explosion in food banks and cutbacks to the number of health visitors and school nurses.

Ayesha Hazarika
Picture: LBC

Mr Ashworth also mentioned that cuts to health services including obesity and smoking cessation services are due this year, despite the wider determinants of ill-health.

The Labour MP for Leicester South spoke to Ayesha about the potential ramifications of Brexit on the health services, including a possible impact upon the importation of medications.

He highlighted that he thought a no-deal Brexit should be ruled out and felt that Theresa May was "highly irresponsible" for denying this.

Listen to the call in full above.