Skip to content
Press release

The King's Fund comments on Labour's Child Health Action Plan

Commenting on Labour’s Child Health Action Plan, Sarah Woolnough, Chief Executive of The King’s Fund, said:  

‘We welcome a targeted approach to improving children’s health, particularly given the shocking data showing that children in this country are facing such poor health outcomes. A good start in children’s early years is critical for their future health and wellbeing so it is very encouraging to see the breadth of activity Labour is planning, from mental health and oral health, to obesity and more. 

‘Children living in more disadvantaged communities are far more likely to face sickness and ill health. It is therefore good to see that Labour is proposing action to address these widening health inequalities.  

‘Research shows that the prevalence of obesity is twice as high in children living in the most deprived areas compared to those living in the least deprived.*  

‘While measures such as implementing the 9pm-watershed junk-food advertising ban are welcome, any government that wants to address issues such as childhood obesity will need to go further and faster. Bolder action will be needed, especially to support those who experience the worst health outcomes. 

‘Measures to improve access to children’s health care services are important, but we also know that the wider context of a child’s life has a huge impact on their health now and throughout their lifetime. Given this, any government wanting to improve children’s health must tackle societal issues, such as the number of children living in poverty or destitution, if they are to redress unacceptable inequalities in health and ensure every child gets the best start in life.'  

Notes to editors

*Obesity Health Alliance (OHA) figures OHA responds to the National Child Measurement Programme 2022-23  

For further information, or to request an interview, please contact the Press and Public Affairs team on 020 7307 2585.

The King's Fund is an independent charity working to improve health and care in England. We help to shape policy and practice through research and analysis; develop individuals, teams and organisations; promote understanding of the health and social care system; and bring people together to learn, share knowledge and debate. Our vision is that the best possible health and care is available to all.

Contact the press team