NHS cuts blames for 30,000 deaths in England and Wales

Study claims that NHS and social care cuts have caused 30,000 excess deaths in England and Wales 2015.

An unprecedented rise in mortality which resulted in 30,000 excess deaths in 2015 has been linked to cuts to the NHS and social care according to a study.

The claim, made by researchers from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Oxford University and Blackburn with Darwen council, say the increase in mortality took place during “severe cuts” to the NHS and social care funding leading to compromised performance.

Researchers ruled out other possible causes of the increase in mortality in England and Wales such as; cold weather, flu and the low effectiveness of the flu vaccine that year.

They concluded that “the evidence points to a major failure of the health system, possibly exacerbated by failings in social care.”

The Department of Health (DH) has refused the claims and responded by accusing the authors of the paper published in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine on Thursday of bias.

The rise in deaths in 2015 to 529,655 was the biggest increase in almost 50 years. The data shows the mortality rate was the highest since 2008.

NHS trusts in England have been instructed to make further budget cuts in 2017. You can read a full analysis of the paper by the Guardian