The CCG is aware that in recent weeks a number of statements have been made about rickets in Morecambe as a result of a television interview with Dr Andy Knox, our Executive lead for Population Health and Engagement. These appear to have caused some misunderstanding and public concern.
We would like to clarify that rickets is a very rare condition and has multiple causes including genetic, social and economic factors. In every area, including Morecambe Bay, there will be a number of cases each year of people with vitamin D deficiency which at its most severe can lead to rickets; however this is very rare and is not contagious.
The CCG is currently working with partner organisations to correct any misunderstandings which may still exist.
Dr Andy Knox says: “Towards the end of 2017, I made a statement about rickets in the context of a Granada News piece about poverty in Morecambe that seems to have caused some upset and misunderstanding – for which I am sorry.
"Rickets is a rare condition and has drawn concern from the Chief Medical Officer and The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and has multiple causes, including: lack of sunlight, poor diet and genetic. Where there are cases of rickets in Morecambe and the local area, all of these will have multifactorial causes. People have perhaps perceived that this is a condition that can be caught or passed from person to person, which is not the case.
"I had hoped that my interview would draw attention to the wider impact of childhood poverty and its effect on child development, health and wellbeing. In my work, I am passionate about working with our communities, fellow health workers, public sector partners, the voluntary sector and our elected members to tackle the hugely important issues surrounding the health and wellbeing of our population, including health inequality. I look forward to focussing on the much bigger issues that we are facing. Together we really can change the future."