UK health indicators: 2019 to 2020

Estimates to understand the UK population’s health status by sex. Based on the European Health Interview Survey (EHIS) for 2019 to 2020. Uses age-standardised rates.

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Email Geeta Kerai, Ireoluwaposi Onadeko, Emma Bannister and Tim Vizard

Dyddiad y datganiad:
29 March 2022

Cyhoeddiad nesaf:
To be announced

1. Main points

  • The majority of the UK population (75.3% of men and 75.7% of women) reported being in good or very good health.

  • Almost half of the UK population (45.7% of men and 50.1% of women) reported having a long-standing health problem; more women (22.3%) reported being limited (but not severely) in activities because of a health problem in the last six months than men (18.5%).

  • The four most common chronic conditions in the UK for men and women were allergy, high blood pressure, low back disorder and depression; allergy was the most common reported chronic health condition in both men and women (30.4% and 36.0%, respectively).

  • Around one in four (25.1%) women and one in five (18.4%) men reported experiencing a delay in getting health care in the past 12 months because the time needed to obtain an appointment was too long.

  • Around 4 in 10 men (39.7%) and women (43.9%) had a healthy body mass index (BMI) score, ranging between 18.5 and 24.9; however, a greater proportion of men (37.9%) were overweight than women (29.3%), based on a BMI score ranging between 25 and 29.9.

  • Around 3 in 10 men (27.9%) and one in four (24.1%) women reported drinking alcohol one to two days a week; while more men reported drinking alcohol every day or almost every day than women (8.8% and 4.7%, respectively), a greater proportion of women reported that they did not drink or had never had alcohol than men (16.6% and 12.6%, respectively).

  • Around one in four women (23.1%) said they provide informal care or assistance compared with around one in six men (17.4%); 80.3% of men and 80.7% of women reported the informal care or assistance is provided to family members.

This release looks at the health of the UK population across a variety of health measures using age-standardised rates. Age-standardised rates allow comparisons between populations that may contain proportions of different ages. They are a better measure than simply looking at crude proportions, because they account for population size and age structure.

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2. UK health indicators data

UK health indicators: 2019 to 2020
Dataset | Released 29 March 2022
Age-standardised rates based on data from the European Health Interview Survey (EHIS), 2019 to 2020, for the UK by sex and country.

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3. Measuring the data

The European Health Interview Survey (EHIS)

The European Health Interview Survey (EHIS) collects health data in a consistent form across European Union (EU) member states. It was carried out under EU regulations, which continued to apply in the UK up to 31 December 2020. The EHIS uses the same questions across three modules. These are:

  • the European Health Status module, which allows measurement of the health status of the population in general

  • the European Health Care module, which allows measurement of the use of health care services and the unmet needs for health care

  • the European Health Determinants, which allows measurement of some aspects in lifestyles or health-related behaviours that may have a positive or negative impact on someone's health

Data collection in the UK

In the UK, data were collected for residents in private households aged over 16 years. Data for England, Scotland and Wales were collected between July 2019 and March 2020. Data for Northern Ireland were collected between October 2019 and December 2019.

Sampling and weighting

The sample design was based on respondents who took part in the Labour Force Survey (LFS) and consented to taking part in a follow up Health and Lifestyles Study (HLS), where they completed demographic and EHIS modules. The total sample size was 16,269 people from 12,344 households (41.5% response rate). Data were collected by telephone interview.

Survey weights were applied to make estimates representative of the population. Further information on survey weights can be found in the European Health Interview Survey (Wave 3) – User Guide (PDF, 296KB.

You can find out how to access the data on the UK Data Service.

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Manylion cyswllt ar gyfer y Bwletin ystadegol

Geeta Kerai, Ireoluwaposi Onadeko, Emma Bannister and Tim Vizard
Ffôn: +44 300 0671543