News in numbers: December/January

06 December 2019

A breakdown of community health news this month, in numbers. Download the PDF, here

550,000 miles The distance travelled by severely ill patients in England sent far from home for mental health treatment. It is equivalent to going around the world 22 times. The Royal College of Psychiatrists called for 100s more NHS mental health beds to help end this ‘shameful’ practice caused by a lack of provision in their own area

9% The rise in antibiotic-resistant infections in England between 2017 and 2018. There were an estimated 60,788 infections in 2018, according to Public Health England – or 165 a day.

Antibiotic-resistant bloodstream infections rose by a third (32%) between 2014 and 2018. The public are urged to always take their doctor’s or pharmacist’s advice and only take antibiotics when necessary

2 in 5 The number of 11- to 16-year olds in Wales who have gambled in the past year. Of those who had gambled, 16.2% reported feeling bad as a result. Boys gambled more than girls, and fruit machines were the most popular habit

The 10 most deprived areas in England have been hit with nearly 15% of all public health cuts in the past 5 years: almost £1 of every £7 cut. This is 6 times larger than in the 10 wealthiest places, which lost £1 in every £46.

Councils’ public health budgets have been cut by £871.6m over the past 5 years

Every week, nurses in Wales give the NHS extra hours to the value of 976 full-time nurses. This reliance on nurses’ goodwill contributes to stress, sickness, low morale and poor retention rates 

80% The number of new mental health counsellors for students to be appointed over the next 4 years in Scotland. £20m investment is being made to support the mental health of all college and university students

£10m The amount the NHS in Scotland will receive to help cope with winter pressures. The funding is in addition to the £6.3m allocated for unscheduled care

An only child is up to 7x more likely to be obese than one with siblings, a US study suggests. In a group of 27 only children, 37% were obese, compared with 5% in a group of 41 with sibling


Institute for Public Policy Research. (2019) Hitting the poorest worst? How public health cuts have been experienced in England’s most deprived communities. See: (accessed 7 November 2019).

Institute of Health Visiting. (2019) Health visiting in England: a vision for the future. See: (accessed 7 November 2019).

Kracht CL, Sisson SB, Guseman EH, Hubbs-Tait L, Arnold SH, Graef J, Knehans A. (2019) Family eating behaviour and child eating patterns differences between children with and without siblings. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior 51(10): 1188093. See: (accessed 8 November 2019).

Melendez-Torres GJ, Anthony RE, Hewitt G, Murphy S, Moore GF. (2019) Prevalence of gambling behaviours and their associations with socioemotional harm among 11–16 year olds in Wales: findings from the School Health Research Network survey (online only). European Journal of European Health 2019: ckz176. See: (accessed 7 November 2019).

Public Health England. (2019) 165 new antibiotic resistant infections every day in England. See: (accessed 7 November 2019).

RCN. (2019) The nursing workforce in Wales 2019. See: (accessed 7 November 2019).

Scottish Government. (2019a) More mental health support for students. See: (accessed 8 November 2019).

Scottish Government. (2019b) NHS Scotland winter funding. See: (accessed 7 November 2019).