Stephen Mosley MP is calling for local services in Chester to tackle the growing problem of liver disease.
Deaths from liver diseases have risen by 25% in the last ten years, in contrast to other major causes of death, which are all showing a downward trend. With one in 10 deaths of people in their forties being liver-related, there is an urgent need to address this health inequality.
The UK will soon have higher death rates from liver disease than any similar EU country. However charities believe this is likely to be a huge underestimation due to the way in which liver deaths are coded. Liver health should be a major public health priority as most liver disease in adults is preventable and some, such as hepatitis C, are curable. Even slight changes in people’s lifestyles can improve the health of the liver. It should be made easy for people to understand the health of their liver and how to improve it, through lifestyle advice, increasing awareness and testing for viral hepatitis and liver function tests (LFTs).
At an event in Parliament Stephen Mosley joined actress Sadie Frost to learn more about liver diseases and what needs to be done to improve services and support for patients in Chester. Sadie’s father died from hepatitis C and she is a patron of The Hepatitis C Trust.
Charities involved included The British Liver Trust, The Hepatitis B Foundation, The Hepatitis C Trust, Turning Point, Weight Concern, Alcohol Concern, Addaction, Liver North and Children’s Liver Disease Foundation.
Stephen Mosley MP said “Liver disease is a growing problem and for too long has not been the priority for health services”.
“The number of deaths from liver disease in the North West is unacceptable and it is essential that action is taken to increase awareness, prevention, testing, diagnosis and support for patients”.
“Causes of liver diseases such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C, obesity and alcohol are preventable. Cheshire West Health Commissioners must make sure they are using their resources to tackle the issue and support patients and I am calling on them to do more”.
“I have written to the Director of Public Health for Chester to ask them to set out their plans for raising awareness, preventing and testing for liver disease and ensure this issue is given the attention it deserves.”