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Measuring inequalities 2016

This publication demonstrates the large and persistent inequalities in life expectancy within Wales, echoing the findings of the original Measuring inequalities profile published in 2011.

Key Messages

The key message of Measuring inequalities 2016 is that although people in Wales are living longer and spending longer in good health, large differences in life expectancy persist between the least and most deprived areas.  In men, there remains a gap in life expectancy of around nine years between the least and most deprived and an even larger gap in healthy life expectancy of approximately 19 years.  These gaps show no clear sign of reducing over time.

 'A More Equal Wales' is one of the seven goals of the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015. Measuring inequalities 2016 is intended for use across the public health system by Government and Public Service Boards to influence change at national and local level in pursuit of this goal. To this end, Measuring Inequalities 2016 is complemented by an evidence map of NICE guidance to inform action to reduce health inequalities.

Explore Data Further

The recently-published Making a Difference report also highlights ten key areas for action that Wales should prioritise to enable significant improvements in our health and wellbeing, a reduction in inequalities and a maximum return on investment for our economy.

The full set of Measuring inequalities 2016 products can be found below, including a national report and local documents providing figures for health boards and local authorities.  Further sources of information on health inequalities are detailed in the Observatory topic page.

The publication Measuring Inequalities 2016 includes the following products: The main Wales report (.docx) describing inequalities at the national level

Seven health board documents containing a selection of local charts and maps: Abertawe Bro Morgannwg UHB (.docx) Aneurin Bevan UHB (.docx) Betsi Cadwaladr UHB (.docx) Cardiff & Vale UHB (.docx) Cwm Taf UHB (.docx) Hywel Dda UHB (.docx) Powys THB (.docx)

Access The Data

Four interactive data files (.xlsx) providing copyable charts, maps and tables by health board and local authority: Inequalities in life expectancy and healthy life expectancy (.xlsx) Inequalities in all-cause mortality rates (.xlsx) Effects of reducing mortality from specific causes of death in the most deprived areas (.xlsx) Comparison of Wales, health board and local authority deprivation fifths (.xlsx), to show the range of deprivation in local areas

Two infographics providing summaries of the key messages (.pdf): Inequalities in life expectancy, Wales (.pdf) Inequalities in life expectancy, local authorities (.pdf)

technical guide (.pdf) providing further guidance on how to interpret the figures, their limitations, and the methods and data sources used

Get in touch 

It has recently come to light that the population aged 85+ has been underestimated in some areas by the Office for National Statistics population estimates. In most parts of Wales, the impact of this issue on Measuring inequalities 2016 will be very small; further details are available in this brief paper.

For further information or to give feedback on Measuring inequalities 2016, please email us on