The Department of Health for Northern Ireland has published new statistics on life expectancy with focus on variations across time periods, genders, deprivation levels and urban and rural areas in Northern Ireland. The report titled 'Health Inequalities – Life Expectancy Decomposition 2019' was published as a part of the Northern Ireland Health & Social Care Inequalities Monitoring System.
Key findings from the report include the following:
- The life expectancy for males has increased by 0.5 years and remained the same for females in the last five years. In 2015-2017, the life expectancy rates were 78.5 and 82.3 years for males and females, respectively.
- While 0.8 years was added to male life expectancy owing to reduced mortality for numerous causes (primarily circulatory disease), it was offset by 0.3 years due to increased mortality for other causes.
- Any increase in female life expectancy was negated by increased mortality for a range of causes (primarily vascular dementia or Alzheimer’s disease).
- Males born in 2015-2017 were likely to live 3.9 years fewer than their female counterparts born in the same period.
- Life expectancy for males and females living in the most deprived areas was 7.1 years and 4.5 years, respectively, lower than those living in the least deprived areas
- Life expectancy for males and females living in urban areas was 3.1 years and 2.1 years, respectively, lower than those living in rural areas.