This short story investigates the provision of unpaid care by males and females in England and Wales in 2011, and how this varied by age, general health status and economic activity. The provision of unpaid care has grown since 2001 and projections suggest the demand for such care will more than double over the next thirty years. The provision of unpaid care is therefore an important social policy issue because it makes a vital contribution to the supply of care, and affects the employment opportunities and social and leisure activities of those providing it. Unpaid carers are a socially and demographically diverse group and as the demand for care is projected to grow, people are increasingly likely to become providers of care at some point in their lives.
The first section of this short story investigates the age profile of all usual residents in households providing unpaid care by gender, and is followed up with a comparison of their general health status by the extent of care they provide. In the final section, differences in unpaid care provision are measured across various economic positions by gender among all usual residents aged 16 years and above living in private households and communal establishments.