RESIDENTS in Cumbria are being short-changed when it comes to Government spending on public health, a meeting has heard.

Cumbria County Council will receive £36 per person in 2019-20, compared to £172 per person in the City of London and £128 in Kensington and Chelsea, councillors were told.

Speaking at a meeting of the council in Kendal, Cllr Frank Morgan said the figures came from Public Health England, part of the Department for Health.

“They state on their website that they exist to protect and improve the nation’s health and wellbeing,” said Cllr Morgan, the Labour member for Cleator Moor West. “Government needs to explain why the health and wellbeing of some people is more important than others.”

Cllr Morgan said PHE claimed to be trying to address health inequalities but did not appear to be working for Cumbria.

Cabinet member for health, Deborah Earl, said: “The funding provided for Cumbria suggests we are not as popular as our neighbours in the south, even though there is clear evidence of health inequalities in this county.”

Cllr Earl, the Labour member for Harraby South, added: “It is massively challengingly to keep services going with less and less money, but the importance of prevention is a very important priority for this council.

“Funding is vital and I would be the first to stand-up and ask for more but I want us to concentrate on doing the best we can with the funds we do have.”