Eight key takeaways from 'sobering' report into health in Liverpool
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A report was published this week outlining the major health challenges faced by Liverpool by 2040, as well as what is needed to tackle them.
The 80-page 'State of Health in the City' document, written by Professor Matt Ashton, Director of Public Health for Liverpool, calls for radical and systemic changes to the way the city responds to health challenges - such as a possible reduction in life expectancy.
The report, which is set to be discussed at a full council meeting on Wednesday, January 17, was called a "sobering read" that "bare the challenges we face in improving the health of our population" by the Leader of Liverpool City Council, Cllr Liam Robinson.
Here are some of the most important projections outlined in the report, which could occur if current trends continue and no further action happens.
1. Life expectancy could fall in women:
Without intervention, a decrease in life expectancy of about 0.1 years on average is expected. This figure will increase by around 0.5 years for men, but will fall by a whole year for women.
2. Residents could live a quarter of their life in ill-health:
The report estimates that without action residents of Liverpool will live 26.1% of their life in ill-health, with this percentage likely to increase for those living in the most deprived areas.
3. Overall number of health conditions could rise:
The report predicts that the overall number of health conditions is projected to rise by 191,300, an increase of over half bringing the number to 546,600.
4. Depression diagnoses could more than double:
The report predicts that the biggest increase in major illness is projected in the number of people diagnosed with depression, expected to rise by over double to 164,200 people.
5. Large increases expected with cancer and diabetes:
The report predicts that at the current rate there will be increased numbers of people diagnosed with cancer (rising to 34,100 people), diabetes (rising to 46,900 people), asthma (rising to 44,900 people), and chronic kidney disease (rising up to 35,000 people).
6. Key health issues facing children and young people in next two decades could be mental health, obesity and child poverty.
7. Parents out of work could have impact on children's mental health:
The report forecasts that if more parents are out of work this could have a negative impact on our children's mental health, pupil educational attainment and school absenteeism.
8. Minority ethnic adults living with major illnesses could rise by 4,000.
Director of Public Health, Professor Matt Ashton, said: “The findings are a stark and clear call for urgent action, not just by public bodies such as health services and the local authority, but for all those who have an interest in the current and future prosperity of the city.
“Poor physical and mental health shortens lives lived in good health and impacts not just on individuals but on those around them, such as other family members and the wider community.
“It is demonstrated to have a major detrimental impact on the economy through reduced productivity and increased demand for public services, and is a vicious cycle that needs to be broken.”