STUDY OBJECTIVES: To investigate variations and trends in life expectancy in English district health authorities in relation to gender and Jarman deprivation level. DESIGN: Mortality data for English health authorities from 1984-94, compiled by the Office for National Statistics, were assessed conventionally and using life table techniques. SETTING: District health authorities in England. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Life expectancies in the 105 DHAs in relation to rank, to gender, and to deprivation category based on the census based Jarman score. CONCLUSIONS: Differences in life expectancy had widened over the decade and prosperous areas with greatest longevity had seen the largest gains. In most deprived areas improvements in life expectancy were negligible. The greatest gender differences in life expectancy were also seen in deprived areas.
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