Health Inequalities – Sub-Regional Report 2017

Date published: 15 February 2017

The Department of Health today published the 2017 sub-regional report on health inequalities within Health & Social Care (HSC) Trust and Local Government District (LGD) areas within the north of Ireland.

Health Inequalities Sub-regional Report 2017 Image

This biennial publication is one of a series of reports produced as part of the NI Health & Social Care Inequalities Monitoring System (HSCIMS) and follows on from the Health Inequalities – Regional Report 2016 which presented analysis at the regional level.

This report provides an up-to-date picture of health inequalities within HSC Trusts and LGDs in relation to area differences in morbidity, mortality, utilisation and access to health and social services.

Key Findings

  • health outcomes are generally worse in the most deprived areas within each Trust/LGD when compared with those seen in the Trust/LGD as a whole. Large differences (health inequality gaps) continue to exist for a number of different health measures
  • male life expectancy increased across the period in all Trust areas and Local Government Districts (LGDs), with the exception of Antrim & Newtownabbey LGD, where it remained similar
  • female life expectancy also increased across the period in all Trust areas and in approximately half of the LGDs, while remaining broadly constant in the remainder
  • over the period analysed, a larger number of indicators for each HSC Trust, saw widening inequality gaps than those where gaps had narrowed. This was also true for the majority of LGDs with the exception of Fermanagh and Omagh, Mid Ulster and Mid and East Antrim
  • as seen regionally, deprivation related inequality was most evident in indicators relating to alcohol and drug use, suicide/self-harm and teenage births
    • deprivation gaps relating to alcohol related admissions were among the most notable in all LGDs, ranging from 46% to 118% higher in deprived areas than across the sub-region
    • similarly, drug admission rate inequality gaps were among the five largest gaps for the majority of sub-regions, with the exception of the South Eastern Trust and Lisburn & Castlereagh LGD, where the gaps were still relatively wide
    • alcohol related admission and deaths rates both showed narrowing inequality gaps in around half of the sub-regions analysed, but in many instances these gaps remained large
    • the inequality gaps for, either self-harm admissions and/or suicide were among the largest inequality gaps in every LGD area
    • the teenage birth rate for the most deprived areas within each of the Trusts was at least twice that in the overall Trust itself

Notes to editors: 

1. The Health and Social Care Inequalities Monitoring System (HSCIMS) comprises a basket of indicators which are monitored over time to assess area differences in mortality, morbidity, utilisation of and access to health and social care services in the north of Ireland, and has expanded over recent years to include additional work streams relating to health inequality. This report is the update of the 2016 regional HSCIMS analysis and includes the latest available information.

2. Inequalities between the 20% most deprived Trust/LGD areas (defined using the 2010 Northern Ireland Multiple Deprivation Measure (NIMDM) produced by NISRA) and the Trust/LGD and the north of Ireland as a whole, are measured.

3. Included in the report are 42 health indicators analysed for each of the five HSC Trusts and eleven LGDs, 26 of which are presented at DEA level.

4. It should be noted that the ‘Preventable’, ‘Amenable’ and ‘Avoidable’ standardised death rates have been updated to reflect the revised definitions of avoidable mortality published by ONS in May 2016. In addition, the ‘Healthy Life Expectancy’ and ‘Disability Free Life Expectancy’ indicators have been revised to exclude communal establishments. Figures for earlier years contained in this report may differ slightly from those published in previous HSCIMS reports.

5. The results presented in this publication are based on data from General Register Office, Hospital Inpatient System, Child Health System, NI Cancer Registry, Business Services Organisation, NI Fire and Rescue Service, NI Ambulance Service, Community Information Branch and the Health Survey NI.

6. All HSCIMS reports and data tables are available to view and download from the Departmental website.

Additional Information

Further information on the Health and Social Care inequalities Monitoring System is available from:

Health Inequalities Section
Public Health Information & Research Branch
Department of Health
Annexe 2, Castle Buildings

Tel:      028 90 522501 or 028 90 522043                        


7. For media enquiries please contact the DoH Press Office 028 9052 0575 or email Out of hours please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07623 974383 and your call will be returned. Follow us on twitter @healthdpt

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