Plan to eventually roll out scheme across England to let GPs prescribe boilers, insulation and double glazing to fuel-poor patients .
The UK government is preparing a national programme for doctors to prescribe boilers, insulation and double glazing to fuel-poor patients suffering from diseases exacerbated by cold homes.
The energy secretary Ed Davey will on Tuesday announce £3m funding to fund preparatory work on the scheme across England aspart of the government’s fuel poverty strategy. He said health secretary Jeremy Hunt was supportive of the scheme.
Cold weather is estimated to cost the NHS £1.5bn a year. About 9,300 Britons died prematurely during the 2012-13 winter due to cold homes.
“Talking to GPs and other health professionals, they get frankly fed up when they’re just dealing with the symptoms and not the root causes,” said Davey. “This all costs money, huge amounts of money, dealing with the blooming symptoms. I want to deal with the root causes. Why hasn’t this been done before. I am absolutely furious that people have not done this before.”