Life expectancy key to success of levelling up in UK’s poorer areas

Public health expert’s report says Covid figures from Manchester reveal sharp decline in social conditions

Boris Johnson’s post-Covid levelling-up agenda will fail unless it addresses declining life expectancy and deteriorating social conditions in England’s poorest areas, a leading authority on public health has warned as he published figures showing the impact of the pandemic on Greater Manchester.

Sir Michael Marmot revealed the coronavirus death rate in Greater Manchester was 25% higher than the England average during the year to March, leading to “jawdropping” falls in life expectancy and widening social and health inequalities across the region over the past year.

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