PEOPLE living in Worcester are more likely to die early, according to a think tank.

The city was named as one of 32 ‘risk zones’ in the UK, where people are 29 per cent more likely to die from 'avoidable causes'.

The Centre for Progressive Policy classes Worcester as a ‘risk zone’ because of its NHS finances, lower life expectancy and deprivation.

It found that men in Worcester die almost a year younger than the national average, while the county’s hospitals ran a deficit far higher than other trusts.

Peter Pinfield, chairman of Healthwatch Worcestershire, said: “In Worcester we have low income levels so poverty levels and people struggling is always higher.

“People drink too much and don’t do enough exercise. Smoking is another one. It’s about the pressure one is under. We have to tackle it.”

He added that the figures have also been affected by council and hospital cuts.

Paul Caruana-Galizia, senior research analyst at the centre for progressive policy, said: “We classify Worcester local authority as a ‘risk zone.’

“This is because Worcester’s male life expectancy at birth is lower than the average English local authority’s.

“And also because Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust ran a deficit of 16 per cent of turnover, according to the latest available financial data, referring to 2015/16.

“In comparison, the average English NHS trust ran a deficit of three per cent of turnover that year.”

Mr Caruana-Galizia said the centre also found a strong relationship between deprivation and health.

He said: “Worcester’s level of deprivation is nine per cent higher than the average local authority’s. This deprivation leads to worse health outcomes and an NHS trust that is under pressure.

“This is the picture we see in Worcester and the 31 other risk zones we highlight in the report.”

The centre’s report, titled Diagnosis Critical: launching an inquiry into health and social care in England, does not clarify which causes of death were 'avoidable,' although the phrase often refers to diseases, cancers and lifestyle-related illnesses.

Men in Worcester live on average to 78.9-years-old, compared with the national average of 79.7-years-old.

Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust was unavailable for comment.