As the UK emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic ‘Build Back Better’ has become the mantra. Important, but we need to Build Back Fairer. The levels of social, environmental and economic inequality in society are damaging health and wellbeing.
It was the principles of fairness and the need to do things differently that animated the concrete recommendations we set out in our February 10 Years On Review, just before the pandemic hit with such devastating intensity. Inequalities in mortality from COVID-19 and rising health inequalities as a result of social and economic impacts, have made such action even more important.
The aim of this report is three-fold:
- To examine inequalities in COVID-19 mortality. Focus is on inequalities in mortality among members of BAME groups and among certain occupations, alongside continued attention to the socioeconomic gradient in health – the more deprived the area, the worse COVID-19 mortality tends to be
- To show the effects that the pandemic, and the societal response to contain the pandemic, have had on social and economic inequalities, their effects on mental and physical health, and their likely effects on health inequalities in the future
- To make recommendations on what needs to be done
We urge that the Government learns the lessons of the pandemic, prioritises greater equity and health, and works urgently to reduce the severity of the health crisis caused by the economic and social impacts of the pandemic and the societal response.
- Give every child the best start in life
- Enable all children, young people and adults to maximise their capabilities and have control over their lives
- Create fair employment and good work for all
- Ensure a healthy standard of living for all
- Create and develop healthy and sustainable places and communities
- Strengthen the role and impact of ill health prevention
The ‘COVID-19 Marmot Review’ was commissioned by the Health Foundation
Health inequity and the effects of COVID‑19 (2020)
To support countries throughout their recovery and transition from COVID 19, the WHO Regional Office for Europe, have issued a publication by their Office for Investment for Health and Development, Venice, Italy, that sets out an agenda for building a better future by:
(i) identifying some of the key social and economic impacts of COVID 19 and its containment measures
(ii) proposing mitigation measures that can be taken to reduce these negative impacts. Building a better future from COVID 19 requires policies and interventions that reduce inequities, address vulnerabilities first and leave no one behind.