Lower life expectancy and serious illnesses linked to seaside towns including Cleethorpes
Written by Lauren Paul
Professor Chris Whitty, England’s chief medical officer, has declared that a national strategy is a necessity after information was revealed about seaside towns’ tendency for serious illnesses and lower life expectancy.
Prof. Whitty stated that coastal towns, including Cleethorpes, have been “overlooked by governments” and had their “ill-health hidden”.
Issues such as bad housing and poor health need to be addressed through a dedicated health improvement policy, he said.
Seaside towns like Cleethorpes are typically occupied by older generations who naturally put pressure on the NHS due to their more complex health problems, he added.
The report indicates that there are gaps in the necessary health services in these coastal areas due to issues with recruitment for health staff.
Despite the natural advantages the coast faces with lower pollution and access to healthier outdoor spaces, medical problems such as heart disease, diabetes and strokes are facing shocking rates which may be associated with the higher percentage of smokers.
Cllr Randerson believes that obesity is also the result of fast-food outlets saturating these locations.
These health concerns go hand-in-hand with an increase in mental health problems brought about by the pandemic as well as the social problems which are prominent in coastal towns.
Underachievement in schools, poor transport and low-paid seasonal jobs are some of the causes highlighted in the report.
Overcrowding in houses also correlates with lower life expectancy for males.
On the other hand, asthma appears to be a less common issue on the coast.
The chief medical officer said: “Coastal areas are some of the most beautiful, vibrant and historic places in the country.
“They also have some of the worst health outcomes with low life expectancy and high rates of many major diseases.”
Health Secretary Sajid Javid believes that the new Office for Health Promotion can make some positive changes.
He said: “Those living in coastal areas clearly face different sets of challenges to those inland, but everybody, no matter where they live, should have similar opportunities in education, housing, employment and health.”