An interactive map that allows Britons to search for the life expectancy in their area has revealed how a man born in Westminster can expect to reach his 85th birthday – but a man in Glasgow will likely only live to 74.
The map has been put together from data from the Office for National Statistics.
It allows users to search for life expectancy from both birth and the age of 65 in any part of the country.
The area with the highest life expectancy for men is Westminster in central London, where they can expect to live to 85. For women, the best area is Kensington and Chelsea, with an average life expectancy of nearly 88.
By contrast, men and women living in Glasgow are expected to only live to 73 and 78 respectively.
It lays bare the stark disparity between people living in the north and south of the United Kingdom.
How to use the interactive map:
Select an area in the right-hand box by either typing a place name or using the drop-down arrow.
Then when you click on a place it will show you the average life expectancy. Tabs at the top allow you to select for men and women either from birth or from age 65.
The area with the highest life expectancy for men is Westminster in central London, where they can expect to live to 85. But men in Glasgow will only live to 73
The second highest average life expectancy for a man is in Kensington, where men can expect to live to 84; followed by 83 in Rutland and South Cambridgeshire.
For women, the other areas with high average life expectancy include Camden, where women can also expect to live to 88; Richmond upon Thames where the figure is 86, and Hart, where the expected age is 86.
After Glasgow, the worst place to live for a man in terms of life expectancy is Dundee. There, a man can expect to live to just 74.
Behind that are Blackpool, West Dubartonshire and Inverclyde, where life expectancies are just over 74.
The data compiled by the ONS also shows life expectancy for men and women who are 40 years old today, and how many more years they are expected to live.
Yet again, regions concentrated in London and the South East feature heavily on the list of the best areas, Glasgow – along with some cities in the North West, including Manchester and Liverpool – make up much of the bottom ten.
Tina Woods, CEO of Business for Health, expressed her concern at the results that showed life expectancy from the age of 40.
‘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 earlier this month.
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.
For women, the best area is Kensington and Chelsea, with an average life expectancy of nearly 88. In Glasgow, Women, will only live to 78
‘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.’
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
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.
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
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 announced last November he will increase the NHS budget by £6.6billion over the next two years.
Campaigners at the time said this will not be enough amid soaring inflation, while strikes over the Christmas period are also increasing 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.
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.’