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Overview on health promotion for older people in the United Kingdom

Billings, Jenny R., Brown, Patrick R (2006) Overview on health promotion for older people in the United Kingdom. healthPROelderly, 27 pp. (KAR id:14680)


There are currently four national health services within the UK, each with a different relationship to Westminster. The entire system has been based on the principle of ‘freehealth care at the point of access’ since the inauguration of the National Health Service in 1948. Though this model holds true for most health care provision, prescription and dental charges now exist. Moreover, and of particular effect for certain older people, social care, which is not deemed to tackle health needs, is not provided by the NHS. Hence, long-term care of frail or disabled older people, for example those experiencing Alzheimer’s disease, are provided for by the Social Services departments of local government and are meanstested, meaning those with savings or property are liable to pay up to €600 per week (Glasby, 2006).

These organisational disparities create a fertile ground for health inequalities to exist. Indeed they are both prevalent and persistent in the UK. The Acheson Report (1998) underlined the continuing disparities in mortality and morbidity linked to social class. Life expectancy for

men in central Glasgow is 69.9 years compared with 82.2 in the Kensington and Chelsea area of London (Office of National Statistics 2006b), largely explainable through socioeconomic inequalities. Seven of the ten local authorities with the lowest life expectancy for men were in Scotland.

Item Type: Research report (external)
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research > Centre for Health Services Studies
Funders: European Commission (
Depositing User: Patrick Brown
Date Deposited: 19 Mar 2009 08:24 UTC
Last Modified: 12 Jul 2022 10:39 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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