The life expectancy of the British has decreased for the first time in the last 40 years, starting that is when the time series began in the early 1980s of the last century. A male born between 2018 and 2020 has a life expectancy of 79 years, 2 months less than those born in the previous three years. This is revealed by an analysis by the National Statistics Office, according to which nothing has changed for women who maintain their life expectancy at 82.9 years. To return to the same levels, it is necessary to go back to the period 2012-24. The main cause is to be attributed to the Covid pandemic which has led to an increase in mortality: in 2020 Covid caused about 80 thousand more deaths than the average of the last 5 years.
A similar trend was recorded in almost all European countries, the United States and Chile. With the exception of Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Finland and Estonia, all the others saw significant decreases, primarily the US with a minus 2 , 2 years of life expectancy for men and a similar trend for women, according to studies by the University of Oxford and the University of Southern Denmark.
In addition to the direct mortality from Covid, which will probably have a strong impact also on the numbers of 2021 but which will then probably diminish, in the medium term the indirect effects of the pandemic and the suspension of life in its normalcy during lockdowns are worrying. Among the main consequences there is a drastic reduction in visits to the treating doctor, hospital consultations, prevention activities: the dizzying increase in waiting times for a medical examination in public facilities has now become one of the most pressing problems in the United Kingdom. (including politicians) for the government.
The analysis of the National Bureau of Statistics highlights differences between the nations of the Kingdom: in Northern Ireland the expectation has slightly increased, in Wales it is unchanged for men and dropped for women, the opposite of England; while Scotland recorded a setback for both genders. And a more detailed look at macro-regions and geographic areas reveals a profound difference in life expectancy between rich and less affluent people. Above all, the case of Scotland, where there are differences of over 10 years in women born in poor areas compared to those born in wealthier families. It is the fault of austerity and conservative cuts according to the head of the Observatory of Public Health-Scotland, McCartney. However, the fact that health is managed by national governments will not facilitate political dialogue with London.