The cost of poor housing to the NHS

This briefing from the Building Research Establishment (BRE) has calculated that the annual cost of poor housing to the NHS is at least £1.4bn.

This is more than double the £600m estimate in their 2010 report.

It provides a strong case for achieving significant public health gains through focusing on the most cost-effective improvements to the homes of the most vulnerable people and indicates that the health impact of poor quality housing is on a par with smoking.

The hazards of cold homes and falls are identified as those which have the greatest impact on NHS costs, whilst reducing falls hazards has the fastest payback because of the relatively low remedial cost.