The aftershock of deindustrialization - trends in mortality in Scotland and other parts of post-industrial Europe

Walsh, D. , Taulbut, M. and Hanlon, P. (2010) The aftershock of deindustrialization - trends in mortality in Scotland and other parts of post-industrial Europe. European Journal of Public Health, 20(1), pp. 58-64. (doi: 10.1093/eurpub/ckp063)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/ckp063

Abstract

<p><b>Background:</b> Post-industrial decline is frequently cited as one of the major underlying reasons behind the poor health profile of Scotland and, especially, West Central Scotland (WCS). This begs the question: to what extent is poor health a common outcome in other post-industrial regions and how does Scotland's experience compare to these other comparable regions?</p> <p><b>Methods:</b> Regions were identified by means of an expert-based consultation, backed up by analysis of regional industrial employment loss over the past 30 years. Mortality rates and related statistics were calculated from data obtained from national and regional statistical agencies.</p> <p><b>Results:</b> Twenty candidate regions (in: Belgium; France; Germany; Netherlands; UK; Poland; Czech Republic) were identified, of which ten were selected for in-depth analyses. WCS mortality rates are generally higher and—crucially—appear to be improving at a slower rate than in the other post-industrial regions. This relatively poor rate of improvement is largely driven by mortality among the younger working age (especially male) and middle-aged female populations.</p> <p><b>Conclusion:</b> WCS mortality trends compare badly with other, similar, post-industrial regions of Europe, including regions in Eastern Europe which tend to be characterized by higher levels of poverty. This finding challenges any simplistic explanation of WCS's poor health being caused by post-industrial decline alone, and begs the question as to what other factors may be at work.</p>

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Hanlon, Professor Philip and Walsh, Dr David
Authors: Walsh, D., Taulbut, M., and Hanlon, P.
Subjects:R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Public Health
Journal Name:European Journal of Public Health
ISSN:1101-1262

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