Health and prosperity in Derbyshire tops national average

A new report has revealed that health and prosperity in Derbyshire is as good – and in some cases better – than the national average for England.

The Derbyshire Director of Public Health annual report highlights many positives, including the fact that generally people living in Derbyshire are healthier than the national average.

But the study highlights the need for all ages to improve diets, adopt more active lifestyles and reduce the use of harmful substances like tobacco, alcohol and other drugs.

Councillor Dave Allen, Derbyshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Communities, said: “The report shows very significant variations between the wealthiest areas compared to those of lower income in terms of overall health and how healthy people’s lifestyles are.

“In the wealthier areas people can expect to live ten or more years longer than those in the lower income ones, and to be in good health for many more of these years too.

“Many factors play a part in this so we will do everything possible to tackle this and create a healthier Derbyshire.”

On average men in the county are expected to live 77.7 years, which is higher than the national average.

Women are expected to live 81.6 years – slightly lower than the national average.

Over the last 10 years or so, the death rates from all causes and across all ages have continuously gone down locally and in England as a whole, so people are living longer.

And that is bringing challenges for health and social services.

Some areas where Derbyshire is doing well include:

More children taking part in sport and exercise

Lower rates of young people committing crime

Very low rates of teenage pregnancy

High rates of cancer screening and vaccination rates

Below average death rate from preventable causes for under-75s.

Areas where improvements could be made include:

Breastfeeding rates need to be higher despite efforts

We need to tackle higher than average numbers of children not in education, employment or training

Too many women smoke while pregnant

We need to reduce preventable death from health disease and strokes

Challenges posed by childhood obesity, adult smoking and alcohol-related harm.

The study comes as Derbyshire County Council takes back responsibility for public health after 40 years.