King's Fund survey backs intervention by state on health

Health promotion charity King's Fund claims its survey into public attitudes to government intervention on health debunks the myth that people resent the 'nanny state'.

While most people agree their health is an individual responsibility, they believe they "do not control many of the factors that affect their own health, and that government action is required".

However, the type of intervention deemed a priority depends on socio-economic class.

People from lower economic groups say the most effective health-improvement measures the Government could implement would be to cut the price of fruit and vegetables, and to introduce free access to sports facilities. The more well-off want more government intervention on lifestyle issues, like smoking and alcohol.

Some 86 per cent of respondents agreed the Government should provide health information and advice, 84 per cent said it should put health warnings on products that present a proven risk to health, and 73 per cent agreed the Government should ban junk food advertising to children.

The results are based on personal interviews with 1,000 people and additional focus groups.

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