Majority believe cutbacks affect healthcare most

A new survey shows that 53% of people believe health is the area where cutbacks have had the greatest impact.

The figure comes from research carried out by pharmaceuticals group Pfizer, which looked at the effect austerity measures have had on Irish people and their health.

Of the 1,000 people surveyed, 72% of adults believe families with young children have been impacted by austerity budgets, with more than a third suggesting that group has been the hardest hit.

Asked about the areas affected most by cutbacks, health was mentioned first, second or third by 93% of respondents.

It also shows that older adults were nominated as the group second most likely to have been impacted by austerity.

​​“Austerity budgets have achieved some welcome results with cost reductions in the health system and greater efficiencies secured," said Professor Charles Normand of Trinity College.

"We need to ensure that we preserve this but we also need to recognise the enormous reduction in the health budget and really this level of reduction is not sustainable any more without great impact on the health and social services," he said.

When asked to rank their own health from one to ten, the average score given was 7.9.

The full results of the Pfizer Health Index study will be announced at the Royal College of Physicians later today.

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