The Essex seaside town with second highest ‘mental health need’ in England

Clacton's beach completely empty, along with the seafront and pier looking completely deserted
Clacton's beach completely empty, along with the seafront and pier looking completely deserted

Figures show Tendring District had the second highest suicide rates in the country between 2017-19

Clacton-on-Sea has the second highest ‘mental health need’ in England, according to the latest data. 

An annual report looking into the health of coastal communities found high levels of mental health issues among residents in Clacton.

The data looked at the mood and anxiety disorders for every area in England, assessing neurotic, stress-related and somatoform disorders (a mental disorder that manifests as physical symptoms that suggest illness or injury).

Suicide rates in the Tendring District – which includes Clacton – were also the second highest among all districts in England between 2017 and 2019.

Speaking to BBC Essex, the Director of Public Health at Essex County Council, Dr Mike Gogarty, believes one of the main reasons people in Clacton suffer more with their mental health is because of a lack of jobs.

Dr Mike Gogarty (Image: Essex County Council)
Dr Mike Gogarty (Image: Essex County Council)

In the report, he explained that, like many coastal communities, reasons for Clacton’s decline includes its location, poor transport system, lack of diversification in the local economy and low educational attainment.

“Clacton shares some common drivers in the decline of coastal communities,” he said. “These in large measure are around the poor and declining employment prospects and opportunities in the town.”

Clacton also has significantly worse morbidity and mortality compared to the rest of Tendring and Essex with hospital episodes, including emergency admissions, markedly higher in Clacton. 

The report also found that general hospital episodes, including emergency admissions were “markedly higher” in Clacton, with residents needing to attend hospital more frequently for conditions like COPD, chronic heart failure, falls (65+) and self-harm.

In general, coastal communities are proven to have some of the worst health outcomes in the country, with lower life expectancy and high rates of many major diseases.

Some of the reasons for this, the report explained, are because the areas often attract older, retired citizens who inevitably have more health problems.

They also higher concentrations of deprivation, ill-health and often, a lack of job opportunities.

CREDIT : Essex Live

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