‘Plumbers should report UK’s deadly-cold homes’ – Say Health Watchdog
Articles in several of the press today saying that a health watchdog is asking for plumbers and boiler engineers to report cold homes to the council to slash winter deaths.
Around 25,000 extra brits – many elderly – die during the coldest months of the year.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence wants workmen to call for help if properties are too chilly.
Advisers will then tell residents how to access cheaper energy bills, benefits or free insulation.
Experts want all council Health and Wellbeing boards to set up helplines. Hospitals and care home must also not send sick Brits back to unheated properties.
NICE’s Prof Gillian Leng said: “We must stop the revolving-door scenario where people are made ill by living in a cold home, go into hospital, but are discharged back to the cold home.”
Neil Scholfield of the Heating and Hotwater Industry Council said Britain has the worst quality housing stock in the western world and eight million annual plumbing visits were a “massive opportunity to identify the vulnerable and direct them to help”.
Age UK says cold housing costs the NHS in England £1.36billion a year and many endure ill-health because they can’t afford heating.