THOUSANDS of Barnsley residents living in poverty are also suffering from health problems, new figures have revealed.
New estimates from the Office for National Statistics suggest there were around 45,315 people living in poverty in private households in Barnsley as of March 2021 - 6,240 of whom had a cardiovascular or respiratory condition.
The ONS used various sources to come up with the figures, including data from the 2021 census and information on health conditions collected during the coronavirus pandemic.
Though the research did not find that rates of such conditions were higher for those in poverty than for the general population, the ONS said that as people in poverty are more exposed to the cold, they are more likely to be hospitalised or die as a result of them.
The findings come as public health organisations warn of disastrous consequences if people cannot heat their homes this winter.
Of the 10.8 million people living in poverty across England as of March 2021, 1.3 million were estimated to be suffering from heart or breathing issues - with a particularly high concentration in coastal areas and in the North West.
Across Yorkshire and The Humber, around 120,730 people who were estimated to be living in poverty had heart or breathing problems.
A recent survey for the Royal Society of Public Health found that 41 per cent of the population at large are worried that the cost-of-living crisis is impacting their physical health.
Responding to the findings, the organisation’s chief executive, William Roberts, said that the UK ‘cannot afford to be on the back foot’ when it comes to tackling health inequalities.
“The cost-of-living crisis is a public health crisis and prevention of ill-health is key to supporting the financial growth and wellbeing of the nation,” he added.
A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Social Care said: “We have prioritised health and social care in the Autumn Statement with a further £8 billion, on top of previous record funding, to ensure people can access high quality care as soon as possible.
“We are supporting people with the cost-of-living crisis, with £1,200 of support for the most vulnerable households and have provided more than £3.4 billion this year to local authorities in England to tackle issues including alcohol use, obesity and smoking.”