More than 350,000 people live in Wakefield district.
The rich diversity of our backgrounds, experience and lifestyles is what makes the district a great place to live. However, these differences also have a big impact on our health.
From studying the data about the health of the population, we know that there is still too much of a gap between the health of people in the most well-off areas of the district and people who live in poorer areas.
Statistics tell us that generally people in the Wakefield district will die younger than in other parts of the country and will spend more years of their lives in poor health.
People’s health and life chances are heavily influenced by the early years of their lives: too many babies are born to mothers’ who smoke, less than half of new mums breast feed their babies, many children grow up in low-income households and in families that need support from services and a lot of children lack basic skills when they start school. Mental ill health affects more people than in other parts of the country and self-harm and deaths by suicide are high.
We also know that a lot of health problems that affect people in the Wakefield district could be changed with the right support and resources to address the causes, such as smoking, drinking, poor diet and lack of exercise.
Ten facts about the health of people in Wakefield district:
- We are living longer with more illness than ever before
- People living in the most well-off areas of the district on average live eight years longer than those living in the poorest areas
- Cancer and cardiovascular disease are increasing in people aged over 75
- Less than half of new-born babies are breast fed
- Childhood obesity is rising faster than elsewhere in the country in all age groups
- More than half of children are growing up in low-income households
- One in five adults are smokers
- One in every hundred hospital admissions is related to substance misuse
- One in three people suffer from a mental illness
- Air pollution kills over 150 people every year
You can find out more information about the health and wellbeing needs of our local population in the Wakefield Joint Needs Assessment (JSNA).