Dorset residents are generally healthy, have a high life satisfaction rating and feel that the things they do in their lives are worthwhile. The growing number of older people will increase demand for health and social care services so it is important to use local evidence to anticipate need and target service provision as effectively as possible.

Health and wellbeing can be influenced by where we live, our behaviours, our work and our leisure activities. Health behaviours impact on both physical and mental health - and many people may be affected by more than one. Healthy populations live longer, and are more productive making a contribution to the economy as well as maintaining personal wellbeing.

All data relates to statistics that pre-date Covid unless stated otherwise

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Health

  • Healthy life expectancy is the number of years a person would be expected to live in good health. In Dorset, there is a difference of 17 years between healthy life expectancy and overall life expectancy for men, and 18 years for women1.
  • 61% of adults in Dorset are classified as overweight or obese; similar to the national average and a great concern due to the lifethreatening conditions it can lead to2.
  • Residents in Dorset are more likely to be unpaid carers: 12% of residents compared to 10% in England14. There are now around 3,000 registered carers in Dorset15.
  • Smoking prevalence continues to fall both nationally and locally. 10% of adults in Dorset currently smoke compared to 14% in England3.
  • The rate of people killed and seriously injured on the roads continues to be above average, possibly due to Dorset’s high proportion of rural roads4. Nationally more than half of all fatal collisions occur on rural roads5.
% year six children who are overweight or obese
% year six children who are overweight

Mental health

  • By 2029, we expect to see more than 10,000 people aged 65 or over living with dementia6. It is likely that an additional 1,900 informal carers will be needed to cope with this increase7.
  • Nationally, one in ten children and young people need support or treatment for mental health problems8.
  • Research suggests that the rate of Armed Forces veterans with mental health conditions could be as high as 10%, compared to around 3% for the general population16.
  • During the course of a year, almost one in four of us will suffer from some form of mental health condition.9.
People aged 65+ with dementia
People aged 65+ with dementia

Substance abuse

  • In Dorset, admission rates for alcohol related harm continues to rise year on year10.
  • In Dorset, for every £1 invested in adult drug treatment services, a social return of £4 is generated.11.
  • Domestic abuse, mental ill-health and substance misuse have been termed a ‘Toxic Trio’ commonly found in families where harm to children has occurred.
  • 2,422 domestic abuse incidents were reported in Dorset last year12.
Toxic Traingle infographic

What are we doing about it?

Public Health Dorset aims to improve and protect the health and wellbeing of the population across Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole with an emphasis on reducing inequalities in the health of those living and working in our local communities. We want to help as many people as possible stay healthier for longer by coordinating action across the whole health and care system.

Caring affects mental and physical health as well as employment potential and the ability to maintain relationships, often leading to poorer life outcomes and increased use of health and social care interventions. Dorset Council recognises the huge value that carers add to the local economy and offers support and advice to carers and families by providing breaks for carers and help in an emergency. The Council will be appointing a Carers Lead Organisation (CLO) which will work with the Young Carers Service to improve the support network for carers.

The council in partnership with Dorset Armed Forces Covenant Programme is working to ensure that the Armed Forces Community in Dorset has access to the services and assistance it requires.

The council works to supports people in making healthy lifestyle choices and leading active lives. The Live Well Dorset service, funded by Dorset’s councils, is just one of the ways in which this support is provided13.

Headline Figures

10,000

People aged 65+ living with dementia by 2029

2,421

Domestic abuse incidents in Dorset last year

17-18 years

Difference between healthy and overall life expectancy

31%

Dorset year 6 children overweight

61%

Dorset adults overweight

10%

Smoking prevalence in Dorset

Headline Figures

10,000

People aged 65+ living with dementia by 2029

2,421

Domestic abuse incidents in Dorset last year

17-18 years

Difference between healthy and overall life expectancy

31%

Dorset year 6 children overweight

61%

Dorset adults overweight

10%

Smoking prevalence in Dorset


Sources

  • 1 Health state life expectancy at birth by local areas, UK, 2016-2018, ONS
  • 2 PHE Public Health Outcome (PHOF) Indicators, 2018/19 data
  • 3 PHE Public Health Outcome (PHOF) Indicators, APS 2019 data
  • 4 PHE Public Health Outcome (PHOF) Indicators, 2016/18 data
  • 5 https://www.rospa.com/road-safety/advice/road-users/rural/ [Accessed 10/04/19]
  • 6 Dorset Council, 2019
  • 7 https://www.dementiastatistics.org/statistics-about-dementia/human-and-financial-impact/
  • 8 Pan Dorset Local Transformation Plan: Children and Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing, 31/10/17
  • 9 Government's response to the five year forward view for mental health, 9 January 2017.
  • 10 PHE Public Health Outcome (PHOF) Indicators, 2018/19 data
  • 11 Alcohol and drugs prevention, treatment and recovery: why invest?, Public Health England, 12/02/18
  • 12 Dorset Police, 2019/20: https://www.dorset.police.uk/
  • 13 https://www.livewelldorset.co.uk/
  • 14 2011 Census, KS301
  • 15 Adult and Community Services, Dorset Council, April 2019
  • 16 House of Commons Defence Committee, Mental Health and the Armed Forces, Part One: The scale of mental health issues. 11th report 2017-19

36 Reports

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