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Methods Health Expectancy

Health Expectancies express the number of remaining years spent in a health state at a particular age assuming current rates of mortality and morbidity.
Health expectancies are developed to address whether or not longer life is being accompanied by an increase in the time lived in good health (the compression of morbidity scenario) or in bad health (expansion of morbidity). So health expectancies divide life expectancy into life spent in different states of health. In this way they add a dimension of quality to the quantity of life lived.
Health Expectancy is a general term referring to an entire class of indicators. Therefore, as there are many dimensions of health, there are many health expectancies. The most common health expectancies are those based on self-perceived health, activity limitation and chronic morbidity. The health expectancy indicator based on activity limitation is called the Healthy Life Years (HLY) indicator and is part of the European Structural Indicators.
In this website, you will find Belgian data on health expectancies based on self-perceived health, activity limitation and chronic morbidity by gender, age and region.

These indicators are calculated using the Sullivan method (a practical calculation guide can be found here). Mortality data for the years 1997, 2001, 2004 and 2008 were obtained from the DGSIE/ADSEI and prevalence data on health status were obtained from the 1997, 2001, 2004 and 2008 Health Interview Surveys.


A selection of websites that contain information related to health expectancies can be found here.


For more information, contact Herman Van Oyen