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Editor’s blog Friday 2 July 2010: Health inequalities are always with us

How depressing to see fresh evidence that the great Julian Tudor Hart’s Inverse Care Law remains as true as ever.

‘Tackling inequalities in life expectancy in areas with the worst health and deprivation’, the new report on health inequalities from the National Audit Office deserves your attention.

"The Department of Health has made a concerted effort to tackle a very difficult and long-standing problem. However, it was slow to take action and health inequalities were not a top priority for the NHS until 2006. We recognize that this is a very complicated issue and that it took time to develop an evidence base. However, the best, cost-effective interventions have been identified and now must be employed on a larger scale in order to have a greater impact and improve value for money.

"The Department should target its efforts on the most deprived areas of the country and develop costed proposals to maintain or increase investment in preventative interventions to tackle the conditions which lead to health inequalities."
Amyas Morse, head of the National Audit Office