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Death rates vastly different in more affluent areas

(137 Posts)
Rainycloudyday Fri 01-May-20 12:43:52

Sorry if there has already been a thread on this. News today shows the shocking difference in death rates in more and less affluent areas. I’m not at all surprised sadly. On here I’m always surprised when people talk of knowing multiple people who have died. I live in a reasonably comfortable middle class area I suppose, and am from that background, and (touch wood) don’t personally know anyone who has passed away or been in hospital from Covid. For people who have lost several people around them, friends, neighbours etc. are you in more or less affluent areas?

OP’s posts: |
Rainycloudyday Fri 01-May-20 12:44:42

Also, I remember early on reading about the impossible task of social distancing in tower blocks and I felt so ashamed that the issue hadn’t occurred to me but then of course was so obvious. Is it factors like this which make such a difference?

OP’s posts: |
MiniTheMinx Fri 01-May-20 12:48:16

Do you have a link for what you have read?

mostlydrinkstea Fri 01-May-20 12:54:19

I'm in an affluent part of a big city and people are dying. So far it has been over 80s but I've got my first under 50s funeral coming up. I'm a vicar and by virtue of the job I know a lot of old people and sick people. I also know a lot of people who are not white because it is an ethnically diverse area. Lots of deaths here.

CathyandHeathcliff Fri 01-May-20 13:03:14

I thought the same, I don’t know anyone personally who has died of it. I know someone who tested positive (NHS nurse) but she had very mild symptoms.

RedToothBrush Fri 01-May-20 13:03:47
Data and deprivation link - ons
Data and ethnic link

Both data sets out today.

Both relate to economics and health inequality in different ways

None of this should be a surprise

Mintjulia Fri 01-May-20 13:22:08

I’m not sure about that. The numbers locally to me are highest in a very affluent village with a high percentage of retired people.

So is it density? Or age?

Rainycloudyday Fri 01-May-20 13:28:29

@MiniTheMinx It was on the BBC website earlier. Was also the first item on the radio news at lunchtime.

I agree it shouldn’t be surprising. Sadly there are many people like me who aren’t as aware of the inequalities issues in society as we should be-trust me, I’m trying to do better and expand my understanding.

I guess I just get taken aback by posters on here who seem to know lots of people dying as that doesn’t mirror my own experience. And today’s news has made me think a lot harder about that.

OP’s posts: |
middleager Fri 01-May-20 13:36:37

It's in The Times, but behind a paywall if anybody can link to it.
This has long bothered me when you look at my 2nd link, which rates area risk (based on cases and health/health care provision) as my home town was #1

Check your area here

middleager Fri 01-May-20 13:37:26

TooTrueToBeGood Fri 01-May-20 13:43:56

As a general rule, poorer areas tend to have higher population density, poorer diet, lower standards of health generally, higher rates of smoking and alcohol consumption. The smoking alone is probably enough to cause a statistically significant difference given that the virus attacks the lungs.

MereDintofPandiculation Fri 01-May-20 14:26:10

Poorer areas have fewer people able to work from home and still get paid, more people working in supermarkets and coming into contact with hundreds of people each day. If someone is symptomatic, they're less likely to be able to self isolate within the house - no second bathroom for their exclusive use, for example.

Hairdowntohisknees Fri 01-May-20 14:32:06

People in poorer areas are more likely to be the ones still going out to work and using public transport. It was always going to have a bigger impact on people who couldn't WFH.

Ginfordinner Fri 01-May-20 14:33:50

Isn't there a higher rate of obesity in less affluent areas as well?

I live in what would be considered a naice, middle class area, and the only people I know who had corona virus are my next door neighbours, but one of them is a nurse. They have both made a full recovery.

Hairdowntohisknees Fri 01-May-20 14:34:17

I think it's wrong to blame it on higher alcohol consumption. A drink is a drink whether it's fancy wine or a can of lager.

Wtfdidwedo Fri 01-May-20 14:35:55

The Welsh figures are bad but there's a lot of deprivation in the worst affected health boards. There's also quite a lot of respiratory disease in ex mining communities, and horrendous CO2 levels around Newport and Cardiff because of he stupid fucking M4 so hardly surprising.

Gran22 Fri 01-May-20 14:36:53

@TooTrueToBeGood I agree. I live in an ordinary suburb of a large northern city, most younger neighbours work, teachers, nurses, white collar but not high level professionals. Pretty much everyone around seems to be sticking to the guidelines. A couple of miles away is a very different area, and apart from the points you make, the local culture means lots of gathering on the streets. The police have been out with notices in community languages and have had some success. However, the lack of understanding of, or the unwillingness to comply with lockdown, is worrying.

InglouriousBasterd Fri 01-May-20 15:00:02

It’s also easier to socially distance when you can sit / kids can play in a garden and you can drive yourself to a larger supermarket. People in flats depending on public transport and small corner shops / express supermarkets just can’t socially distance as effectively. Also white collar / middle class workers are more likely to be able to WFH as opposed to working with public / travelling on public transport. Add that to the higher rates of smoking / obesity / health issues and it’s inevitable sad

picklemewalnuts Fri 01-May-20 15:05:11

Surprisingly, nicotine seems to have had a protective effect so although smoking is bad for the lungs it's not been as catastrophic as you'd expect.

Poverty however, yes. Shocking.

That said, it is the point of wealth, surely? To have a protective effect? I mean it's inevitable, isn't it? I'm not sure how it can be combatted.

Fallsballs Fri 01-May-20 15:07:39

I thought smoking was helping.
Anyway I live in a common area and everyone is alive.

ToffeeYoghurt Fri 01-May-20 15:27:41

I've said all along it would be the poor most affected. Particularly those living in large cities like London where the housing crisis means poorer (and often not so poor) people are crammed into shared housing, often very poor quality.

I was also saying how obesity has a strong link to poverty. Many thousands live, whole families, in one room often with no proper cooking facilities. And you're less likely to access fresh healthy food like when reliant on a food bank. High density poor quality housing that impacts on physical and mental health and being forced to go to work on crowded public transport. Airports not closed - Heathrow was receiving daily flights from Wuhan long after the situation there was known. The poor especially those in large cities were sitting ducks.

It's also worth noting that the conditions with the highest Covid mortality rates aren't actually on the shielding list. Whether by coincidence or not these conditions - type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular issues, are known as diseases of poverty. These people are the most vulnerable of all. Extremely high risk but not officially acknowledged as such and therefore lacking the protection offered by the shielding list. Ironically it's possible some conditions on the list are in actual fact lower risk. Immunosuppressants are amongst the drugs currently being trialled. There might be a slightly increased chance of catching Covid for people on these drugs but it's possible they're more protected against progressing to a serious stage.

I thought the fastest growing alcohol problems were amongst middle class middle-aged and older groups. That's what I've read. And smoking. (Post pandemic) come to South Kensington or Chelsea. You'll see many very clearly wealthy people puffing away.

Hairydilemma Fri 01-May-20 15:43:45

Sadly so many reasons, probably all of which have been covered here. Less ability to isolate or stay at home, health conditions linked to poverty, plus those with some of these health conditions less likely to be able to work and are therefore more likely to be poor (ie this works both ways - people who are poor are more likely to be unhealthy and people who have chronic illness/disability more likely to be poor).

Less likely to have a nice chest freezer, spare fridge - or even a fridge at all - so have to shop and encounter people more often. Can’t afford to get veg boxes and butcher’s deliveries and stay safe inside.

More likely to still be out at work and probably many in caring etc roles. On public transport etc. Very sad sad

Orangeblossom78 Fri 01-May-20 15:53:14

I'm in Bath, city area but generally wealthy with pockets of poorer areas, and we have a very low number of cases. One of my parents is in rural Scotland and they have twice the number of cases per head of population. Also Bath has quite a lot of older retired people.

Orangeblossom78 Fri 01-May-20 15:54:33

Ironically it's possible some conditions on the list are in actual fact lower risk. Immunosuppressants are amongst the drugs currently being trialled. There might be a slightly increased chance of catching Covid for people on these drugs but it's possible they're more protected against progressing to a serious stage


Orangeblossom78 Fri 01-May-20 15:58:39

Some similarities in areas such as the Midlands for pneumonia in previous years...and deprivation as well. (I know, flu is different, but just to compare). There's a link there as well.

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