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Claer Barrett is right to say that higher national insurance, rising inflation and stratospheric energy bills will be financially catastrophic for millions of people on low incomes (FT Money, March 19). I’d go further — the cost of living crisis is a health crisis too.

Health issues and problems with money exacerbate each other. Financial insecurity and deteriorating health can create a vicious cycle that gets progressively worse if left unchecked. The result? More than one in five people in the most deprived places in Lambeth, London, live with multiple long-term conditions, compared to only one in 10 in the least deprived neighbourhoods.

So the cost of living crisis is a health issue, not just a wealth issue. We must do more to help those hit hardest by the cost of living crisis to avoid building another health crisis on top of Covid.

Andy Ratcliffe
Executive Director, Impact on Urban Health, London SE1, UK

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