New government data suggests the UK may be one of the loneliest places to live in the Europe. However campaigners warn that we are failing to measure the problem directly and this is making the problem worse.

Responding to reports today (Thursday) that suggest the UK may be one of the loneliest places to live in Europe, the Campaign to End Loneliness has called on Ministers to follow through on promises of a population wide measure of loneliness [1]. Campaigners argue that such a measure will help to direct action and support to those most in need.

Laura Ferguson, Director for the Campaign to End Loneliness, says: “Many people will be appalled to think that the UK is one of the loneliest places in Europe – but the simple truth is that we don’t even know how big this problem really is.

“Currently we only measure loneliness among those in care or caring for others. If you’re not in this group, we have no idea what problems you may be facing. This ignorance means that local authorities and charities don’t know where to put resources to make the biggest impact.

“The Government has said they are committed to introducing a wider measure for loneliness but we are yet to see any action. Loneliness has been shown to lead to profound ill health and if we don’t get a grip on this problem we are going to see the consequences in our hospitals and social care services.