In October 2020 we launched the Inequalities in Health Alliance with a letter to the prime minister pressing for urgent action to reduce health inequalities.
The COVID-19 pandemic has hit those already disadvantaged in our society hardest, exposing and exacerbating health inequalities. The moral case for tackling this is imperative. It is important to the public too – in a 2020 public opinion poll commissioned by the RCP, 81% agreed that there should be a UK government strategy to reduce health inequality.
Our letter urged the prime minister to ask the government to do three key things: develop a cross-government strategy to reduce health inequalities, commence the socio-economic duty (section 1 of the Equality Act 2010), and adopt a ‘child health in all policies’ approach.
We’ve received substantial interest from organisations requesting to join the coalition demonstrating the overwhelming support for action. We are delighted that the IHA has now grown to almost 200 members, including royal colleges, specialist societies, charities, think tanks, local authorities and NHS trusts. By building momentum we hope to achieve long-lasting change.