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Recent mortality trends in Glasgow: 1981-2015

Date: November 2017
Category: Report
Work programme:
Author: Marie HT Martin and Bruce Whyte

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This report presents analyses of cause-, age- and gender-specific mortality trends over a 35-year period (1981-2015) comparing Glasgow with the rest of Scotland.  This study identifies some improving trends in mortality as well as highlighting continuing or emerging issues of concern.

Some of the key findings are that:

  • between 1981 and 2015, all-cause mortality decreased in all age groups across Scotland, but mortality remained higher in Glasgow than in the rest of Scotland. 
  • slower reductions in mortality led to a worsening of Glasgow’s position relative to the rest of Scotland in the majority of age groups: the gap between Glasgow and the rest of Scotland widened for infant mortality (less than 1 year), child mortality (1-14 years) and for mortality among older adults (45-64 years, 65+ years). The exception to this was mortality in younger working-age adults (15-44 years), in which the mortality gap between Glasgow and the rest of Scotland narrowed.

The report explains these trends in more depth. There are specific findings related to trends and differences in mortality for specific age/gender groups and for specific causes.

This study underlines the importance of a continued focus on health in Glasgow using up-to-date data and one that is informed by awareness of the historical context, the impacts of cohort effects, harms to health accumulating over the life-course and of the impacts of past and present policies and political contexts.