In many respects, the initial reaction to an extra four million individuals living in a country is that public health services will be now receiving more money from taxes, therefore can offer a better service.
To say that however would be to take the statistics at face value, which is always a dangerous game to play. What is not clear is how many of those additional four million are immigrants that are now in employment or how many are not working. All we do know from the Office of National Statistics is that around 55% of the rise is attributed to immigration.
With the current round of austerity measures being well-publicised and fiercely debated throughout the country, many are aware that in some cases health services are being cut. If that is the case, how can they possibly deal with four million more individuals?
A Creaking Service
It stands to reason that, with less personnel and more people to deal with, public health services are going to come under increasing strain in the coming years.
Another dangerous factor of which there is no visibility is how many of the 2million immigrant’s smoke, for example. Much has been done in the UK to combat smoking and reduce the numbers of people who do so, with numbers steadily reducing. Should an increased population then amount to more smoking related conditions and serious illnesses, how will health services cope? Smoking is a great example to use when considering the impacts a growing population has on UK health services.
Painting a Misleading Picture
Of course, government authorities do not want people questioning what is going on when cuts are being made, much less to services that are potentially needed now more than they ever have been.
Avoid being led into a false sense of security and positive thinking by accepting figures that, on face value, show the percentage of smokers in the population falling. If the population rises quicker than the relative numbers of those taking up smoking, then of course the percentage will fall.
These are the figures that the public will no doubt be presented, as evidence that smoking bans and other such initiatives are working in bringing down the numbers of smokers.
The reality is somewhat different, and failure to realise or accept this could lead the country into a health disaster over the next 30 years.
More needs to be done, and quicker, to get people away from the temptation to smoke and explore therapies and treatments to help them to stop.
Jasper and Jasper are a leading an electric cigarette UK company focussing on the latest technology to improve the populations health by finding alternatives to the traditional cigarette.