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The Independent Online
STARK DIFFERENCES in death rates from heart disease in the North and South of Britain are shown in a report out today. For women under 65 the death rate is 90 per cent higher in the North than in East Anglia and for men it is 50 per cent higher.

While the incidence of heart attacks in counties such as Oxfordshire compares with the low rates of the Mediterranean, Belfast and Glasgow have among the highest rates in the world.

The report, Coronary Heart Disease Statistics, 1999, published by the British Heart Foundation, says 5,000 men under 65 die each year from heart disease because of social inequalities.

Dr Vivienne Press, the charity's assistant medical director, said: "Heart disease is increasingly becoming a disease of poorer people, and poor people tend to live in the North rather than the South."