Taking years off your life – NI life expectancy deprivation gaps show increase over last decade

When I asked Billy Hutchinson on Wednesday about the lack of publicity around any PUP campaigning on health and life expectancy, I was thinking about the kind of life expectancy figures that have been released yesterday by the Department of Health in their Inequalities Monitoring System/Life Expectancy Decomposition comparative report:

Chapter 4 deals with the deprivation gap:

The male life expectancy deprivation gap was 4.5 years in 2008-10 which represents a 10% increase from 2001-03.

The female life expectancy gap in 2008-10 remains unchanged from its level in 2001-03 of 2.6 years.

Chapter 5 compares life expectancy between the 20% most and 20% least deprived areas:

The male deprivation gap was 7.6 years in 2008-10 which represented a 7% increase from 2001-03. Higher mortality in the most deprived areas for circulatory disease and cancer each accounted for approximately one quarter of the deprivation gap in 2008-10 while one-fifth was attributable to accidents and suicides.

In 2008-10, the female deprivation gap stood at 4.5 years which represented a 5% increase from 2001-03. Higher mortality in the most deprived areas for cancer and circulatory disease accounts for more than half of the deprivation gap.

The first NI Peace Monitoring Report brought the figures at that time to life by looking at the changing life expectancy as the Metro Number 8 bus drove out of the city centre and into South Belfast. Given that the latest report was comparing 2001-3 and 2008-10 statistics, the figures in the infographic may still be accurate.

bus route life expectancy - CRC's NI Peace Monitoring Report

Surely these are the issues the PUP and other parties like Sinn Fein that claim to have a working class background should be shouting about?

PS: I do wish the BBC would link to reports when they talk about them online.

Alan Meban. Normally to be found blogging over at Alan in Belfast where you’ll find an irregular set of postings, weaving an intricate pattern around a diverse set of subjects. Comment on cinema, books, technology and the occasional rant about life. On Slugger, the posts will mainly be about political events and processes. Tweets as @alaninbelfast.

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