Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Child health statistics review, 1998
  1. Mary Jane Platt
  1. Department of Public Health, The University of Liverpool, Whelan Building, Liverpool, L69 3GB, UK
  1. Dr Platt.

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.

Many health professionals who are interested in child health actually spend most of their working time focusing on ill health and disease in individual children. Yet, each year, population based data, from either routine data collection sources (for example, national registration and notification systems) or from large scale population surveys specifically targeted at or including children, are published. Interpretation of these data can provide a valuable source of information on the health and lifestyles of children and young people, and build up a picture of the health of this segment of the population, and how it is changing over time.

This article, the seventh in a series of reviews of child health statistics, aims to use recently published data to describe trends in the health of children in the UK in the latter half of the 1990s.


The population of the UK continues to rise, and reached an estimated 58.8 million in 1996, 12.1 million (21%) of whom were under 16 years of age.1 However, the rate of growth has slowed a little, reflecting a reduction in “natural change”, that is the excess of births over deaths; the net migration into the UK remains steady.2 Males outnumber females until age 45 years, when the trend is reversed.3 The UK is the second most populous country in the European Union (EU), making up 16% of the EU population, with only Germany having a larger population.4As shown in table 1, the UK has both a higher birth and death rate than the EU average, at 12.5/1000 (733 400 births) and 10.9/1000 (638 900 deaths), respectively, in 1996. These figures have changed little in the last year, unlike the earlier years in this decade, when both rates were falling yearly. Population projections suggest that the population of the UK …

View Full Text