ifferent population groups and communities" like "differences in mobility between elderly people and younger populations or differences in mortality rates between people from different social classes." Throughout the world, there are gross inequalities of health between countries and between various groups within the same country. For example, in Japan, the life expectancy is 81.9 years while in Sierra, it is 34 years. In this essay, health inequality in UK, which is a developed country will be explored to ascertain the magnitude of the problem, evaluate the causes for it and study the various interventions undertaken by the government to tackle it.
Of the health inequalities within the population of UK, the most noticeable is the difference in the life expectancy between the rich and the poor (House of Commons Health Committee or HC, 2009). According to the 2006 statistics, individuals born in Chelsea and Kensington have a life expectancy of 87.8 years while those born in Glasgow city have a life expectancy of only 77.1 years. Despite aggressive measures by the government and effort by the people, health inequalities in UK continue to persist. One of the main reasons for this that while there is improvements in the health status of the poorer population, the richer continue to get better and keep the gap open. The gap is in fact increasing. According to HC (2009), "the gap in men’s life expectancy in the period 2005–07 was 4% wider than the baseline period, while for women, this gap was 11% wider." Also, "from 2005–07, infant mortality in routine and manual groups was 16% higher than in the population as a whole, compared to 13% in the baseline period." The HC (2009) has also reported health inequalities in some major causes of mortality like coronary artery disease and stroke. Similar differences have been noted for infant mortality too.
Apart from socio-economic strata, health inequalities have been reported even between various ethnic groups.