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Social Care

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:29 pm on 25th February 2020.

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Photo of Matthew Hancock Matthew Hancock Secretary of State for Health and Social Care 4:29 pm, 25th February 2020

No. What I am saying is that life expectancy, as I have repeated, is going up, but there are areas where it is not, and we will and we must tackle that. The challenge for us as a country is not to try to pretend that things are different to the facts. The challenge here, which Opposition Members will not accept, is that there are parts of the country where life expectancy is advancing rapidly and there are parts where it is not, and we must tackle that. We cannot have a decent policy conversation if half of the debate will not accept the facts on the ground.

The Marmot report was published this morning. It is absolutely critical that we level up life expectancy. The fact that in Blackpool a healthy life expectancy for men is 53 years yet in Buckingham it is 68 years is a disgrace, and we will put that right, but you cannot put things right if you ignore the facts when you are starting.