Meals on Wheels Postcode Lottery

11-July-2012 SimplyPostcode™

There are many postcode lottery issues today from the NHS to rubbish collections, where the service you receive is different to your neighbours just because you have a different postcode.

Well the latest postcode lottery news to hit the headlines is how the elderly, one of the most vulnerable groups, are being hit by hugely differing levels of service received from some councils.

Meals on wheels is quite literally a lifeline for those elderly people who use them, but some councils are spending less than £4 a week while others are spending almost 30 times that much.  This follows warnings that increasing numbers of older people are arriving in hospital showing signs of malnutrition.

A study based on official statistics by the data analysts, Ssentif, reported that councils spend an average of just under £34 per person per week on meals for elderly people including meals on wheels services and luncheon clubs.   Although while pensioners in Hammersmith and Fulham in west London have £110.77 per week spent on their meals, Stoke-onTrent City Council spends just £3.84.  Similarly Warrington in Cheshire spends just £3.85, which based on an average of six meals a week works out at around 64p per meal.

Campaigners said the figures exposed a “scandalous postcode lottery” in provision for the elderly.  We are governed by one government, which means there should be one rule for everyone, especially with such life impacting decisions purely because of a postcode and where you live.