THE legacy of Margaret Thatcher’s reign as Prime Minister includes thousands of ‘unjust’ and ‘premature’ deaths of British people, a study has claimed today.
The study also accuses Baroness Thatcher of wilfully engineering an economic catastrophe by dismantling traditional industries to undermine the power of working class organisations.
Academics from the universities of Durham, Liverpool, West of Scotland, Glasgow and Edinburgh compiled the study which was published in the International Journal of Health Services.
The study claims under Margaret Thatcher the richest 0.01 per cent of society had 28 times the mean national average income in 1978 but 70 times the average pay in 1990.
It adds that poverty rates in the UK increased from 6.7 per cent in 1975 to 12 per cent in 1985.
Housing and welfare changes are also highlighted in the paper, with policies to sell off council housing and reduce welfare payments resulting in further inequalities.
It also mentions policy changes in healthcare like the outsourcing of hospital cleaners which they said led to increases in infections on wards.
The group also took aim at the coalition Government saying it has opened up the NHS to markets and competition.
Co-author Professor David Hunter, from Durham University’s Centre for Public Policy and Health, said: “Taking its inspiration from Thatcher’s legacy, the coalition government has managed to achieve what Thatcher felt unable to, which is to open up the NHS to markets and competition.
“Its task was made considerably easier by the preceding Labour government which laid the foundations for the changes introduced in April 2013.”