NHS Digital have published the results of the annual population health survey for England.
The Health Survey for England series was designed to monitor trends in the nation’s health; estimating the proportion of people in England who have specified health conditions, and the prevalence of risk factors and behaviours associated with these conditions.
The sample of people that formed the 2015 survey contained 8,034 adults and 5,714 children and 5,378 adults and 1,297 children had a nurse visit.
A summary of the key findings are below. Full details can be found on the NHS Digital website.
- 19 per cent of men and 17per cent of women were current smokers.
- In 2015, 5 per cent of adults were currently using e-cigarettes. The prevalence of ever having used e-cigarettes was much higher among current smokers, at 40 per cent. Only 1 per cent of those who had never smoked had ever used an e-cigarette.
Adult alcohol consumption
- 31 per cent of men and 16 per cent of women drank over 14 units in a usual week.
- 27 per cent adults were obese1. Being overweight was more common than being obese and 41 per cent of men and 31 per cent of women were overweight2, but not obese.
Providing unpaid social care
- 18 per cent of adults had provided unpaid help to someone in the last month because of long-term physical or mental ill-health, a disability or problems relating to old age.
Children’s physical activity
- Excluding school-based activities, 22 per cent of children aged 5 to 15 met the physical activity guidelines of being at least moderately active for at least 60 minutes every day.
Children’s smoking and exposure to other people’s smoke
- 1 per cent of children aged 8 to 15 in the years 2014 and 2015 reported that they smoked regularly (at least one cigarette per week).
- Among non-smoking children aged 4 to 15, 34 per cent of boys and 38 per cent of girls had detectable levels of cotinine in 2014/2015, indicating exposure to other people’s smoke.
- Regular drinking by children was rare. 1 per cent of both boys and girls aged 8 to 15 reported usually drinking once a week or more. The proportion who reported drinking once a week or more increased from fewer than 1 per cent of both boys and girls aged 8, to 5 per cent of boys and 4 per cent of girls aged 15.
Well-being of 13-15 year olds
- The majority of 13 to 15 year olds had high or very high scores on the ONS measures of life satisfaction (81 per cent), feeling that the things they did were worthwhile (78 per cent) and feeling happy yesterday (74 per cent).