Intended for healthcare professionals


Healthy life expectancy has fallen in England and Wales, data show

BMJ 2024; 384 doi: (Published 28 March 2024) Cite this as: BMJ 2024;384:q774
  1. Gareth Iacobucci
  1. The BMJ

Average healthy life expectancy at birth in England and Wales decreased for men and women over the past decade, official figures show.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS)1 said that it was likely the covid-19 pandemic was a major contributor to the drop, given there was minimal change from 2011 to 2019. The trend is also consistent with the ONS’s recent estimates for overall life expectancy in England and in Wales which fell in 2022.23

In England, average healthy life expectancy for a child born between 2020 and 2022 was 62.4 years for males and 62.7 for females. This is …

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