Health expectancies (HEs) divide predicted lifespan into time spent in given states of health thereby adding a quality of life dimension to estimates of life expectancy (LE). The Office for National Statistics (ONS) routinely publishes two types of health expectancies; Healthy life expectancy (HLE), which estimates lifetime spent in ‘Very good’ or ‘Good’ health based upon self-perceived general health and Disability-free life expectancy (DFLE), which estimates lifetime free from a limiting persistent illness or disability based upon a self-rated functional assessment of health.
HEs are used as a high level outcome to contrast the health status of different populations at specific points in time and to monitor changes in population health over time, giving context to the impacts of policy changes and interventions at both national and local levels. HEs have value across state, private and voluntary sectors, in the assessment of healthy ageing, fitness for work, health improvement monitoring, extensions to the state pension age, pension provision and health and social care need.
This bulletin is the first in the series of estimates of HLE at birth, across English regions and Upper Tier Local Authorities (UTLAs), for males and females.