Scots Life Expectancy Rises

Life expectancy for Scottish people has improved over the last 10 years, according to government statistics published today.

The length of life expectancy at birth has increased from 72.4 years to 75.0 years for men and from 78.1 years to 79.9 years for women.

However, Public Health Minister Shona Robison said that the gap between the richest and poorest parts of the country remains 'too wide'.

Ms Robison said: "Health in Scotland is improving but not quickly enough and unacceptable inequalities continue to blight the lives of our most deprived communities.

"The removal of health inequalities will not be achieved overnight. But these statistics show that this government's commitment to tackling these as a matter of priority is both right and, I believe, achievable."

The Scottish Government has recently taken significant action to address alcohol consumption, prevent people from smoking, encourage active living and healthy eating and promote positive mental health.

The Report of the Ministerial Task Force on Health Inequalities has shifted the emphasis of their approach from dealing with the consequences of health inequalities to tackling the underlying causes such as poverty, employment, support for families and improving physical and social environments.

Ms Robison continued: "Over 60,000 people have been seen through the Keep Well and Well North programmes which offer health checks to those aged between 45 and 64 in our most deprived communities.

"Nobody should be condemned to a life of ill health because of where they live or their family's background. Poor health is not inevitable and we should not accept it."


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