Public Health NI - Fact Sheet 2018

Date published: 06 December 2018

The Department of Health today published the 2018 Public Health NI Fact Sheet. This annual publication presents the latest health outcome statistics for Northern Ireland and includes information on general health, mortality and health expectancies at NI, HSC Trust and Local Government District (LGD) levels.

Key Findings

  • Life expectancy in 2015-17 was 78.5 years for males and 82.3 years for females. This represents an increase of 0.5 years in male life expectancy and no change in female life expectancy from 2011-13. There has been no change in life expectancy for either gender when compared to the previous year.
  • Male life expectancy ranged from 79.8 years in the Lisburn and Castlereagh LGD area to 75.8 years in Belfast LGD, while female life expectancy ranged from 83.4 years in Lisburn and Castlereagh LGD to 81.0 years in Belfast LGD.
  • In 2015-17, healthy life expectancy at birth was 59.1 years for males and 60.3 years for females.
  • There were 16.5 suicide deaths per 100,000 population in 2015-17.
  • The suicide rate was highest in the Belfast HSC Trust (24.7 deaths per 100,000 population) and lowest in the Northern HSC Trust (13.3 deaths per 100,000 population).
  • In 2017/18, 18% of respondents scored highly (>4) on the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ12).
  • The preventable mortality rate stood at 207 deaths per 100,000 population in 2013-17.
  • In 2015/16–2017/18 there were 2,062 admissions per 100,000 population due to circulatory disease, and 2,074 due to respiratory disease.
  • Smoking prevalence among adults stood at 18% in 2017/18, and 77% adults drank alcohol.
  • The under 17 teenage birth rate stood at 1.3 births per 1,000 population in 2017.
  • In 2017/18 there were 24 admissions to hospital per 100 population.

Notes to editors: 

1. The 2018 Public Health NI Fact Sheet is an annual publication produced by the Public Health Information & Research Branch which is designed to provide a timely update of the latest health outcome statistics. The report includes the latest statistics at NI, HSC Trust and Local Government District levels for a range of public health outcome statistics including mortality rates and life expectancies based on the latest official deaths data published four weeks previously. The report combines the latest nformation from the Health Survey NI and the NI Health & Social Care Inequalities Monitoring System.

2. This release has been produced within two weeks of receipt of the final data to provide a timely a release as possible for the latest figures. To achieve this, the analysis does not include assessments of change nor sub-regional differences. Previous data for earlier years is available on the Department's website.

3. As of December 2018, the Department of Health are the official producers of life expectancy estimates for Northern Ireland. Previously this was the responsibility of Demography and Methodology Branch within the Department of Finance. As such, the figures contained within this report are the latest, official release of life expectancy estimates.

4. This report will be followed by the Health Inequalities Annual Report (due to be published in early 2019) which will provide analyses of trends and health inequalities across the majority of these public health indicators. In the meantime, further analysis and assistance in assessing change can be provided by Public Health Information and Research Branch upon request.

5. The majority of figures included within this publication are new information however some figures have been taken from information that has already been published in other reports.

6. The information presented in this publication is based on data from General Register Office, Hospital Inpatient System, Child Health System, Northern Ireland Maternity System (NIMATS), Northern Ireland Cancer Registry, Business Services Organisation, the Health Survey Northern Ireland and the Smoking Cessation Database.

This factsheet and data tables are available to view and download from the Departmental website.

Additional Information

Further information on this report is available from:

Public Health Information & Research Branch
Department of Health
Annexe 2, Castle Buildings
Stormont, BT4 3SQ

Telephone: 028 90 522501 or 028 90 522591

Fax: 028 90 523288



7. For media queries please contact the Department of Health Press Office team on 028 9052 0575 or by email. For out of hours please contact the Duty Press Officer on 028 9037 8110 and your call will be returned.

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