How your postcode reveals your life expectancy: Research shows 'concerning' longevity gap – Daily Mail

By Chris Jewers For Mailonline
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A stark disparity between the life expectancy of people living in the north and south of the United Kingdom has been laid bare in a study.
The study examined the life expectancy for men and women across the country who are 40 years old today, and how many more years they are expected to live. 
While regions concentrated in London and the South East featured heavily on the list of the best areas for life expectancy, Glasgow – along with some cities in the North West, including Manchester and Liverpool – made up much of the bottom ten.
For both men and women, London’s boroughs of Kensington and Chelsea, Camden and Westminster were ranked the three best areas for life expectancy – in varying order. Glasgow City, meanwhile, ranked worst for both women and men. 
Pictured: A graphic showing the Top Ten and Bottom Ten areas in the United Kingdom for life expectancy, for a man who is aged 40 today. While a 40-year-old man living in Westminster is expected to life a further 45 years, that numbers is just 35 in Glasgow City
Pictured: A graphic showing the Top Ten and Bottom Ten areas in the United Kingdom for life expectancy, for a woman who is aged 40 today. While a 40-year-old man living in Kensington & Chelsea is expected to life a further 48 years, that number is just 39 in Glasgow City
On average, a 40-year-old woman living in Kensington and Chelsea today was found to have the highest remaining life expectancy than any other area in the UK. From today, she would be expected to live a further 48.64 years (to over 88 years old).
On the other hand, a woman living in Glasgow will live on average nearly a decade less than a woman in the London borough – 39.33 years over the age of 40 (or to slightly over 79 years old) – a difference of almost a decade to the London region.
A similar difference was found between the best and worst areas to live for men.
While on average a 40-year-old man in Westminster is expected to live another 45.49 years, a 40-year-old man in Glasgow is expected to live just another 34.76 years – a difference of over 10 years between the two areas.
For both men and women, the top three areas of life expectancy were London Boroughs – Kensington and Chelsea, Camden and Westminster – with Richmond Upon Thames (another London borough) taking the fourth space for men.
Meanwhile, Scotland and the North West featured heavily on the list for both women and men, with Glasgow City, West Dunbartonshire and Blackpool all in the bottom four areas of the UK for life expectancy.
Inverclyde, North Lanarkshire, Dundee City, Manchester, Liverpool  and East Ayrshire also all featured on the ten UK areas with the lowest life expectancy, for both women and men.
The research, by care experts Guardian Carers, analysed ONS data to reveal how long people are expected to live from the age of 40 across the UK. A spokesperson for Guardian Carers called the results ‘concerning’.
They pointed to the fact that women living in Kensington and Chelsea are expected to live 9.3 years longer than in Glashow, saying that the disparities ‘could highlight major problems in social, economic or health-related factors’.
On average a 40-year-old man in Westminster (pictured, file photo) is expected to live another 45.49 years, a 40-year-old man in Glasgow is expected to live just another 34.76 years – a difference of over 10 years between the two areas
On average, a 40-year-old woman living in Kensington and Chelsea today was found to have the highest remaining life expectancy than any other area in the UK. Pictured: A colourful row of townhouses in Chelsea, London (file photo)
 

Tina Woods, CEO of Business for Health, also expressed her concern at the results.
‘We aren’t talking about a difference of a couple of months here; there are years being shaved off people’s lives and it’s down to regional health inequalities and income deprivation,’ she told MailOnline.
Health inequalities can be caused by a variety of factors, Ms Woods explained.
‘Reduced life expectancy occurs when people have limited access to health care, experience a lower standard of care and practice more risky health-related behaviours such as smoking.
‘Many of these factors are influenced by wider determinants such as income, housing, environment, transport, education and work therefore tackling health inequalities requires an understanding of the interaction of these factors to help implement measures and effective support systems in place.’
She pointed to the Covid-19 pandemic as being behind a widening of health inequalities across the UK, on account of the disease disproportionately impacting individuals and communities already suffering from inequalities, ‘such as those living in more deprived areas and people from ethnic minority backgrounds.’
‘Similarly, to the aftershocks experienced by the pandemic, evidenced by life expectancy in England falling in 2020 for the first time since 2000, we will see widened health inequalities due to the cost-of-living crisis,’ Ms Woods warned.
‘People in those deprived areas will struggle to make healthy food choices or even afford to buy three meals a day. As well as this, heightened financial pressures can cause an increase in stress, depression and anxiety which will impact overall health.
‘Given the cost-of-living crisis and the rising prices of necessities including food and shelter, those living in more income deprived areas are likely to suffer and in turn, their life expectancy will suffer. If we take the impact of food poverty as an example, food prices have already risen 14.3%, according to the British Retail Consortium.’ 
When asked what concerned him about the figures, Danny Waites, a Data Analyst at Embryo, said: ‘Finding a difference between life expectancy by just living somewhere else is a concern. I would have naturally expected there to be some discrepancy but the calculated difference is quite a large chunk of time. Almost 10 years by being 300 miles North of the capital.
Scotland and the North West featured heavily on the list for both women and men, with Glasgow City (pictured), West Dunbartonshire and Blackpool all in the bottom four areas of the UK for life expectancy
He noted that ‘out of the possible 20 areas, both males and females share 11 areas for those with lower life expectancy, whereas higher life expectancy share only five.’
This, he told MailOnline, suggests ‘that for both Males and Females places like South Cambridgeshire, Hart, Westminster, Camden and Kensington & Chelsea would be good places to live a longer life.’
Mr Waites said that wealth plays a large part when it comes to life expectancy, shown by the fact that better-off areas have higher live-expectancy figures.
‘Access to private medical care for example would reduce waiting times to see a Doctor and patients would also have reduced surgery waiting list times too,’ he said. 
‘Areas that have bigger budgets would be able to afford better equipment, technology, staff and therefore increase most patients care that be offered.’
The study on life expectancy reflects research done in England earlier in the year that found people living in the deprived areas are diagnosed with serious illnesses earlier in life, and die sooner, than those in more affluent areas.
And Britain’s NHS acknowledges health inequalities on its website, calling them ‘unfair and avoidable’, saying that they vary between different groups in society.
Covid-19, it says, has highlighted health inequalities in the country, and commissioned a report that identified eight key urgent actions to take, including protecting the most vulnerable from Covid-19, restoring exclusivity, and developing ‘digitally enabled care pathways in ways which increase inclusion’ – among others.
Ms Woods told MailOnline that there is a ‘big onus’ on the government to collaborate with health professionals to tackle health inequalities, but that businesses also have to play their party.
‘This means looking at ways to drive down rates of smoking, introducing measures to address obesity, improving the quality of health and care services and measures to improve housing quality,’ she said.
Ms Woods suggested people living in areas with the lowest life expectancy could be suffering from vitamin deficiencies, with many likely unable to afford to make healthier diet choices. 
‘Without preventative measures in place such as a robust approach to tackle regional health inequalities, education around nutrition and discounted schemes from employers, we face a continued downward spiral for the health expectancy of those living in the North of the UK,’ she said.
The government has announced initiatives that will work to address inequalities, such as the ‘Levelling Up’ initiative. It has also established of the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, while Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has announced he will increase the NHS budget by £3.3bn for each of the following two years.
Campaigners at the time have said this will not enough amid soaring inflation, while strikes over the Christmas period will also increase pressure on the service. 
However, the Government’s budget should not be the sole driver behind reducing the huge life expectancy gap, Ms Woods said. Businesses and regional authorities should also be taking steps that are in the interest of the public’s health.
‘Business has a huge role in public health: as employers, as providers of healthy goods and services and as drivers of healthy local economies,’ she said, pointing to initiatives such as the ‘Work Health’ index.
Life expectancy is heavily impacted by people’s lifestyle. Pictured: An elderly couple go for a jog (file photo). Regions with poor access to healthcare and recreation see shorter lifetimes
More risky health behaviours, such as smoking, can negatively impact life expectancy
Regional authorities, meanwhile, ‘have the advantage of knowing their local areas and communities and there’s definitely a more personable and trusting relationship between residents and their respective authorities than the wider Government.
‘Therefore, it’s vital that regional authorities utilise these relationships to tackle health inequalities,’ Ms Woods added.
Renate Winkler, the Managing Director of Guardian Carers – the group behind the research – suggested the government should be doing more to close the gap. 
He told MailOnline: ‘It is important to consider more deeply the factors influencing these findings. Clearly the ‘levelling up’ approach by the government needs to consider prioritising support in the North.’
‘Some of the more affected areas may experience larger cuts in funding for their local government, meaning that the abilities of this to provide are lesser than in other areas,’ he added.
‘It is important for them to consider where possible funding reallocation to areas that impact health and well-being.’
In ascending order, Glasgow City (39.33), West Dunbartonshire (39.83), Inverclyde (40.12), Blackpool (40.2), North Lanarkshire (40.39), Knowsley (40.66), Dundee City (40.74), Manchester (40.77), Liverpool (40.8) and East Ayrshire (40.97) are ranked as the ten places in the UK with the lowest life expectancy.
For men, the ten areas with the lowest life expectancy are Glasgow City (34.76), Blackpool (35.96), West Dunbartonshire (36.04), Dundee City (36.17), Inverclyde (36.47), Manchester (36.73), North Lanarkshire (36.8), Kingston upon Hull, City of (37.01), Liverpool (37.22) and East Ayrshire (37.33).
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