A report examined mortality measurement as an indicator of healthcare quality.
Source: Roger Taylor and Paul Aylin, Mortality Measurement: The case in favour, Dr Foster
A paper examined the issue of missing data in the English Patient-Reported Outcome Measures survey, and proposed a strategy for addressing this, using multiple imputation techniques. The paper also discussed its impact on assessing provider performance.
Source: Manuel Gomes, Nils Gutacker, Chris Bojke, and Andrew Street, Addressing Missing Data in Patient-Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs): Implications for comparing provider performance, Centre for Health Economics (University of York)
A report examined child mortality in the United Kingdom. It said that infant, child, and adolescent death rates had declined substantially and continued to fall, but there remained areas of concern. Key points included: that the UK had a higher overall childhood mortality rate than in some other European countries; that intentional injury deaths among young people had not been reduced; and that there were marked social inequalities in death rates. The report said that many of the causes and determinants of childhood deaths were preventable, and discussed ways in which to address ongoing concerns. A second report, published alongside, outlined recommendations for reform in England.
Source: Ingrid Wolfe, Alison Macfarlane, Angela Donkin, Michael Marmot, and Russell Viner, Why Children Die: Death in infants, children and young people in the UK – Part A, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health/National Children's Bureau/British Association for Child and Adolescent Public Health
Source: Why Children Die: Death in infants, children and young people in the UK – Part B, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health/National Children's Bureau
A report presented experimental statistics on deaths that were considered avoidable in the presence of timely and effective healthcare or public health interventions (avoidable mortality). Key points included that: avoidable deaths accounted for approximately 23 per cent of all deaths registered in England and Wales in 2012; the leading causes were ischaemic heart disease in males and lung cancer in females; and rates of avoidable deaths were significantly higher in Wales than in England throughout the period 2001-12, but varied across the regions of England. The report advised some caution in interpreting the data, in view of a number of limitations.
Source: Avoidable Mortality in England and Wales, 2012, Office for National Statistics
An article examined how life expectancy had changed in Europe between 1991 and 2008, looking at geographical inequalities (between regions) and socio-spatial inequalities (between regions grouped by an area-level measure of average household income). It was found that regional life expectancy inequalities had not narrowed, despite efforts to reduce them. It said that household income differences across European regions might partly explain these inequalities but, because inequalities transcended national borders, reduction efforts might require European Union-wide co-ordination in addition to national efforts.
Source: Elizabeth Richardson, Jamie Pearce, Richard Mitchell, Niamh Shortt, and Helena Tunstall, 'Have regional inequalities in life expectancy widened within the European Union between 1991 and 2008?', European Journal of Public Health, Volume 24 Issue 3
An article said that the gap in heart disease deaths for those aged over 65 in the richest and poorest areas of England had widened since the 1980s, despite general improvements.
Source: Perviz Asaria, Lea Fortunato, Daniela Fecht, Ioanna Tzoulaki, Juan Jose Abellan, Peter Hambly, Kees de Hoogh, Majid Ezzati, and Paul Elliott, 'Trends and inequalities in cardiovascular disease mortality across 7932 English electoral wards, 1982–2006: Bayesian spatial analysis', International Journal of Epidemiology, Volume 41 Number 6
An article examined the associations between social mobility, income inequality, and socio-economic differences in mortality in European countries. Both income equality and social mobility were found to be associated with larger socio-economic differences in mortality, particularly in women. These findings suggested that although social mobility and income equality might improve population health, they might also increase socio-economic health inequalities.
Source: Audrey Simons, Danielle Groffen, and Hans Bosma, 'Socio-economic inequalities in all-cause mortality in Europe: an exploration of the role of heightened social mobility', European Journal of Public Health, Volume 23 Issue 6
An article examined how age-specific inequalities in mortality rates in England had changed over the previous decade, during a time of widening health inequalities. Evidence was found for equalization, with a clear decline in the ratio of mortality rates during late adolescence. However this decline was not accounted for by traditional explanations. Overall, geographical inequalities were shown to be widening for the majority of ages.
Source: Mark Green, 'The equalisation hypothesis and changes in geographical inequalities of age based mortality in England, 2002-2004 to 2008-2010', Social Science & Medicine, Volume 87
An article examined mortality inequality within Great Britain, comparing England and Wales with Scotland for the period 1925-2005. Inequalities in mortality had became more apparent over time, and affected young Scottish men most severely after 1995. It said that something dramatic appeared to have happened to the Scottish population in the early 1970s that had accelerated these differentials.
Source: Malcolm Campbell, Dimitris Ballas, Daniel Dorling, and Richard Mitchell, 'Mortality inequalities: Scotland versus England and Wales', Health and Place, Volume 20
A report examined the use of life expectancy measures in United Kingdom policy, the drivers behind demographic shifts and population ageing, and the means, and use, of life expectancy calculations for policy purposes. It said that life expectancy was a measure of quantity, not quality, of life and that policies such as setting the state pension age needed to take account of healthy life expectancy and disability-free life expectancy. The report said that such measures varied significantly by region and social class, and policy decisions could therefore disadvantage particular groups more than others. It noted that raising the state pension age would transfer spending from the state pension to disability and unemployment benefits. The report made a range of recommendations for policy.
Source: David Sinclair, Kirsten Moore, and Ben Franklin, Linking State Pension Age to Longevity: Tackling the fairness challenge, International Longevity Centre – UK