Coronavirus: twice as many deaths from Covid-19 in the poorest areas of Wales

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People living in the most deprived areas of Wales are more likely to die from coronavirus than those living in richer places, suggest new figures.

Analysis by the Office for National Statistics shows that 44.6 Covid-19 deaths per 100,000 people in the poorest 20% of communities in Wales.

In the richest 20% of the communities, there were 23.2 deaths per 100,000 population.

Newport has suffered the worst coronavirus death rate to date, almost twice the Welsh average.

An ONS interactive map shows the Cardiff Canton area as the suburb with the highest number of Covid-19 deaths in Wales from April 17 to 17.

Of the 27,510 deaths in the UK, more than 1,000 have already died in Wales from the virus – Public Health Wales reporting 17 other deaths in the past 24 hours.

Cardiff, with 147 people, has the highest number of Covid-19 deaths in 22 local communities in Wales – a rate of 50.9 per 100,000 population.

But the rate in Newport was 56.5 while Rhondda Cynon Taff and Blaenau Gwent also have rates above 50.

The lowest recorded coronavirus mortality rate was 5.4 in Ceredigion – but ONS statisticians said the county’s figure may not be reliable.

Wales’ overall death rate is 28.4 per 100,000 population – below the average of 36.2 in England and Wales.

But the death rates in three health board areas covering the poorest communities in Wales were significantly higher than the overall rate in the country.

The Health Council of the University of Cardiff and Vale recorded 46.2 deaths per 100,000 population, while the Health Council of Aneurin Bevan University – which covers the former Gwent region – recorded 44, 6 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants.

The Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Council – which covers Rhondda Cynon Taff, Merthyr Tydfil and Bridgend – has registered 43.7 deaths per 100,000 population.

Higher mortality rate for men

ONS statistics also show that the Covid-19 mortality rate for men in the five poorest regions of Wales was 61.9 deaths per 100,000 population, compared to 32.0 for women.

“People living in more deprived areas have experienced Covid-19 mortality rates more than double those living in less deprived areas,” said Nick Stripe of the ONS.

“General mortality rates are normally higher in the most disadvantaged areas, but so far Covid-19 appears to be increasing them further. “

British Health Secretary Jonathan Ashworth said the report showed that the virus thrives on inequality.

“Ministers must target health inequalities with a comprehensive strategy to address the broader social determinants of poor health,” he said.

In the United Kingdom, the highest mortality rates have been recorded in the urban areas where many people live. The overall death rate in London was almost double that of the second highest region.

The data also show that the Covid-19 death rate in the poorest parts of England was higher among men, with 76.7 deaths per 100,000 people, compared to 39.6 per 100,000 women.

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