In 2010 the Building Research Establishment (BRE) Trust published the results of a research project which sought to quantify the cost of people living in poor housing in England to the National Health Service. This was possible because of the availability of information from the English Housing Survey on the risk of a home incident occurring and its likely impact on health, measured through the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS), combined with information from the NHS on treatment costs.
A more recent briefing paper updates the BRE models and calculations using 2011 English Housing Survey and 2011 indicative NHS treatment costs. It also widens the definition from ‘poor housing’ to include all ‘sub-standard’ housing.
The data presented here, with kind permission of the BRE and the report authors, sets out
1. The number of homes across England which fall into categories of hazard, and the estimated cost to the NHS of each level of hazard in total.
2. The frequency of various hazards making up 'poor housing' across England, setting out the cost to repair against potential savings to the NHS budget in the illnesses and accidents prevented in a year by doing the repairs; for example preventing falls in the bathroom by installing grab rails and non-slip surfaces.
In this way the report provides a useful assessment of "payback periods" for hazards found in England's housing stock, offsetting the cost of putting the hazards right against the potential cost of treating people who have (for example) fallen in the bath; suffered excess cold or experienced excessive damp.
Data and Resources
- Level of hazard, xlsxlsThis data sets out levles of hazard, in three main categories:
1....The costs and benefits to the NHS of reducing HHSRS Category 1 hazards to an acceptable level, xlsxls
HHSRS is the Housing Health and Safety Rating System.
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English (United Kingdom)
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