Why we need to change

Manchester’s health – and why we need to change

Over the last ten years Manchester has been the fastest-growing city in the UK and that growth is set to continue, albeit at a slower pace.

Despite the city’s thriving economy, parts of the city still suffer from high levels of deprivation. This in turn has an effect on the level of health differences – or inequalities – within the city and compared with other parts of the country.

People who live here are developing conditions like diabetes, vascular, heart and breathing diseases in their 50s, sometimes ten years before people who live in other parts of the country.

This inequality also applies to children – where just over a third of our under 16s are classed as living in poverty. Many of these children live in homes where no-one is employed.

These figures are also set against a population that is living for longer, and often with several complex conditions which need regular help from health and social care services.

Figures at a glance:

  • Life expectancy is 8.8 years lower for men and 7.4 years less for women than elsewhere in England
  • Manchester has the highest rate of early deaths from breathing diseases in England. More than 64% of these deaths could have been prevented.
  • Life expectancy is 8.8 years lower for men and 7.4 years less for women than elsewhere in England
  • Manchester has the highest number of smoking-related deaths in the country.
  • Nearly 27,000 people in Manchester are recorded as having type 1 or 2 diabetes. This is nearly 6% of the city’s population.
  • Around 350 people under the age of 75 die of heart disease in Manchester each year.
  • One in four children in reception class is classed as overweight or obese.
  • In August 2016, just under 3000 people in Manchester were diagnosed with dementia.

Your views – and why we need to change

Services need to be transformed to meet today’s – and future needs. While our health and social care system has been working better together for several years, the majority of services still work separately from each other in different organisations. They are often reactive too – only kicking in after people have become ill in the first place.

This approach can lead to inconsistencies in quality, disjointed and duplicated services, and patients being ‘recipients’ of care – instead of having more control over their health, which increases independence.


Tough financial climate – and why we need to change

We currently spend just over £1.1bn a year on health and social care services in Manchester.

We also spend 45% of our health and social care budget on just 5.5% of the population – this is usually on people with multiple needs or long-term conditions, who could be better looked after through more help and support in the community.

Not only would this be more convenient for the patient, but by putting people in control of their own health conditions it would mean fewer ‘crisis’ admissions to hospital.

Take diabetes as an example – the more patients can access specialist and monitoring support in the community, the more they feel confident and able to learn more about their condition in their normal environment. Learning to watch out for key warning signs and act promptly is key to reducing ‘crisis’ hospital admissions, which are also very expensive.

If we carry on doing things the same way, without changing anything, we predict that we will have an estimated funding gap of £134m by 2020/21.

This figure is the difference between the expected level of government and other funding and the predicted costs of the city’s health and social care services.

Ultimately, we aim to save money by having a stronger focus on prevention and keeping people well in their communities –which in turn will also save money by keeping people out of costly hospital care.