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Life Expectancy

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Introduction

Life expectancy is one of the key indicators of health in a population. Life expectancy at birth is defined as the average number of years that a newborn is expected to live if current mortality rates continue to apply. Life expectancy for men in Blackpool is 74.5 years and for women is 79.5 (2016-18). Blackpool has the lowest life expectancies for both men and women of all upper tier local authorities. There are considerable differences in life expectancy within Blackpool. Men in the least deprived areas of the town can expect to live 13 years longer than men in the most deprived areas. Similarly, for women this difference is 7 years. Not only do people in Blackpool live shorter lives, but also spend a smaller proportion of their lifespan in good health and without disability (Figures 4 and 5).

Blackpool faces major health challenges. Over the last decade there has been a slight improvement in life expectancy; however, the gap between Blackpool and the rest of England and Wales continues to grow (Figure 1 and 2).

Both men and women in Blackpool have the lowest life expectancy from birth of any local authority in England.  Blackpool's life expectancy is 5.1 years below England and 3.8 years below the North West in Males. Female life expectancy is 3.7 years below England & Wales and 2.4 years below the North West female life expectancy from birth (2016-18).

Figure 1 - Life Expectancy at Birth (1991-93 to 2016-18)

Life expectancy 1991 to 2018Source: Office for National Statistics (ONS), Life expectancy at birth (years)
 
Figure 2 - Life expectancy at birth table (1991-93 to 2016-18)
 MALESFEMALES
 EnglandNorth WestBlackpoolEnglandNorth WestBlackpool
1991-93 73.6 72.4 71.6 79.1 77.9 78.3
1992-94 73.9 72.7 71.5 79.3 78.1 78.6
1993-95 74.1 72.8 71.0 79.4 78.3 78.0
1994-96 74.3 73.1 71.5 79.6 78.5 77.7
1995-97 74.5 73.2 71.6 79.6 78.5 77.3
1996-98 74.7 73.4 72.1 79.8 78.5 77.4
1997-99 75.0 73.6 72.2 79.9 78.6 77.9
1998-00 75.3 73.9 72.2 80.1 78.9 78.2
1999-01 75.6 74.2 72.0 80.3 79.1 78.4
2000-02 75.9 74.6 71.7 80.6 79.4 78.4
2001-03 76.1 74.8 72.0 80.7 79.4 78.4
2002-04 76.4 75.1 72.8 80.8 79.7 78.4
2003-05 76.8 75.4 73.2 81.1 79.9 78.8
2004-06 77.2 75.7 73.3 81.5 80.3 78.7
2005-07 77.5 76.0 73.2 81.7 80.5 79.0
2006-08 77.8 76.3 73.5 82.0 80.6 78.8
2007-09 78.1 76.6 73.7 82.2 80.8 79.4
2008-10 78.5 77.0 73.6 82.5 81.1 79.4
2009-11 78.8 77.4 73.8 82.8 81.5 80.0
2010-12 79.1 77.7 74.0 82.9 81.7 80.0
2011-13 79.3 78.0 74.3 83.0 81.8 80.1
2012-14 79.4 78.1 74.7 83.1 81.9 79.9
2013-15 79.5 78.1 74.3 83.1 81.8 79.4
2014-16 79.5 78.2 74.2 83.1 81.7 79.5
2015-17 79.6 78.2 74.2 83.1 81.8 79.6
2016-18 79.6 78.3 74.5 83.2 81.9 79.5
Source: Office for National Statistics, Life expectancy at birth (years)

Variation in Life Expectancy within Blackpool

There is geographical variation within Blackpool (Figure 3 and 4) with male life expectancy ranging from 66.6 years in Bloomfield, to 79.7 years in Greenlands - a difference of 13 years. Female life expectancy ranges from 75.1 years in Claremont to 83.8 years in Stanley.

Figure 3 - Male Life expectancy by ward Blackpool (2013- 2017)

Male life expectancy by ward map
Source: PHE Local Health

Figure 4 - Female Life expectancy by ward Blackpool (2013- 2017)

Female life expectancy by ward map
Source: PHE Local Health

Healthy Life Expectancy

Whereas life expectancy (LE) is an estimate of how many years a person might be expected to live, healthy life expectancy (HLE) is an estimate of how many years they might live in 'good' health. The HLE estimate was calculated using self-reported prevalence of 'Good' general health collected in the Annual Population Survey. Comparisons of HLE between England and Blackpool show a greater difference than for LE alone.

From this it can be observed that residents of Blackpool live shorter lives than the national average, and furthermore spend a smaller proportion of their shorter lifespan healthy and disability-free (Figures 5 and 6).

Figure 5 - Male Life expectancy and Healthy Life Expectancy, Upper Tier Local Authority (2016 - 2018)

Male healthy life expectancy 2018
Source: ONS, Healthy Life Expectancy

Figure 6 - Female Life expectancy and Disability-Free Life Expectancy, Upper Tier Local Authority (2016 - 2018)

Female healthy life expectancy 2018
Source: ONS, Healthly Life Expectancy

Inequalities also exist within Blackpool for healthy life expectancy and disability free life expectancy. It is estimated that in Blackpool's most affluent ward (Norbreck), man might live in 'good' health until the age of 63.3, compared to just 47.1 in the most deprived ward (Bloomfield) (Figure 7).  Variation in healthy life expectancy also exists in females, with females in Bloomfield ward living on average to 51.2 in 'good' health compared to 63.8 in Stanley ward (Figure 8).  There is also variation in the disease groups affecting more deprived areas of Blackpool, compared to England as a whole.

Figure 7 - Male Life Expectancy and Healthy Life Expectancy at Birth - Blackpool wards (2009-2013)

Figure 7. Male Life Expectancy and Healthy Life Expectancy at Birth - Blackpool wards (2009-2013)
Source: ONS, Healthly Life Expectancy

Figure 8 - Female Life Expectancy and Healthy Life Expectancy at Birth - Blackpool wards (2009-2013)

Figure 8. Female Life Expectancy and Healthy Life Expectancy at Birth - Blackpool wards (2009-2013)

Source: ONS, Healthly Life Expectancy

Understanding variations in Life Expectancy

Figure 9 shows the causes of mortality that contribute to the life expectancy gap between the 20% most deprived communities in Blackpool and the 20% least deprived communities in Blackpool, by cause of death for the period 2015-2017. Deaths in younger people, especially in babies, contribute to a larger proportion of the gap, as more years of life are lost. The largest difference in life expectancy between the most and least deprived communities for males are deaths from external causes, that is deaths from injuries, poisonings and suicide which account for 28%. For females it is respiratory diseases (22%); this includes flu, pneumonia and chronic obstructive airways disease. Further analysis highlights that the cause with the largest proportional contribution to the life expectancy gap between the most and least deprived communities is accidental poisoning for men, accounting for a difference of 1.8 years of life expectancy and for females respiratory disease accounting for 1.7 years difference in life expectancy. Circulatory disease mortality is also high in both genders, contributing 20% in males and 22% in females to the life expectancy gap. Circulatory diseases in this measure comprises of coronary heart disease, stroke and other circulatory disease. The disease which contributes the most in the circulatory section of life expectancy gap for both genders is coronary heart disease.

Reduced life expectancy in Blackpool is attributed to a variety of different conditions that in combination have a considerable impact upon the health and longevity of the population.

Figure 9 - Scarf Chart showing the breakdown of the life expectancy gap between the most deprived quintile in Blackpool and the least deprived quintile in Blackpool, by cause of death, 2015-2017

 Gap in life expectancy between the least and most deprived areas of Blackpool

Figure 10 shows the breakdown of the life expectancy gap between Blackpool as a whole and England as a whole, by cause of death for the period 2015-2017. Mortality from circulatory disease (22%) and external causes (17%) in males in Blackpool are major contributors to the gap in life expectancy between Blackpool and England as a whole.

The key causes of shorter life expectancy in Blackpool are deaths from external causes (especially in males), cardio-vascular disease (CVD), respiratory disease (especially chronic obstructive airways disease in females), diseases of the digestive system and cancer.

Figure 10 - Scarf Chart showing the breakdown of the life expectancy gap between Blackpool as a whole and England as a whole, by cause of death, 2015-2017

 Gap in life expectancy between the Blackpool and England as a whole

The Slope Index of Inequality in life expectancy is an indicator that measures health inequalities within a local area. The measure compares life expectancies between geographic subareas that have been ranked by socioeconomic deprivation. Figures 11 and 12 illustrate the change that has occurred over time in the Slope Index of Inequality in both males and females. Life expectancy has marginally increased overall, but this benefit has been seen in the more affluent communities within Blackpool. For further information regarding the Slope Index of Inequality please see:

Guide to the Slope Index of Inequality

Figure 11 - Blackpool - Life Expectancy at Birth by Deprivation Deciles - Males - Slope Analysis

Figure 11. Blackpool - Life Expectancy at Birth by Deprivation Deciles - Males - Slope Analysis
Source: PHE, Life expectancy at birth by deprivation decile, 2002-04 to 2012-14

Figure 12 - Blackpool - Life Expectancy at Birth by Deprivation Deciles - Females - Slope Analysis

Figure 12. Blackpool - Life Expectancy at Birth by Deprivation Deciles - Females - Slope Analysis
Source: PHE, Life expectancy at birth by deprivation decile, 2002-04 to 2012-14