A significant difference in life expectancy from the east to the west of the borough has been revealed.
A survey posted by Healthwatch Enfield in their first annual report suggests that Upper Edmonton has the lowest average life expectancy of 76.2 years, while the western ward of Highlands has the highest, with 86.2.
A map of deprivation in Enfield shows that three wards in the borough, Lower Edmonton, Edmonton Green, and Upper Edmonton, are in the bottom ten per cent nationally for life expectancy.
A man born in Edmonton Green, in the east of the borough, is currently expected to have a lifespan eight years lower than a man born in Grange Ward, to the west.
In addition, a woman born in Upper Edmonton, again in the east, is expected to live 13 years less than a woman born in Highlands.
Lorna Reith, chief executive of Healthwatch Enfield, said the watchdog is ‘very concerned’ by the latest figures.
She said: “We are very concerned at the level of health inequality in the borough. Although the reasons are quite complex it is vitally important that both health authorities and the council focus their attention on improving life expectancy in the east of the borough.”
The divide can be seen clearly where the Great Cambridge Road, A10, cuts through the borough with the most deprived being the three Edmonton wards, and the least deprived the Cockfosters, Grange and Highlands wards.”
Councillor Don McGowan, cabinet member for health and Enfield Borough Council, said: “Incidences of heart attack, stroke and cancer are particularly high in parts of the borough these are the reasons we have such a big difference in life expectancy across the borough.
“The council has had a strong focus on health inequalities for a while now. However the health and wellbeing board introduced additional targeted programs to reduce the life expectancy gap.
“The latest figures show an improvement in the figures. The life expectancy gap for women has now reduced to 8.6 years and that for men is now 8.7 years.
“It is too early to say if this is as a result of the health and wellbeing coard's initiatives, or due to other factors.
“Be that as it may the programs continue and will be introduced in other areas that have recently given cause for concern. These areas are Chase, Jubilee, Enfield Lock and Ponders End. “
Cllr McGowan also told the newspaper that programs such as stop smoking campaigns and improving cancer screening had been introduced.
Other programs included:
- Establishing a tobacco control alliance advertising campaign
- Encourage people to dial 999 immediately if they think they might be having a stroke
- Healthy hearts advertising
- Additional training sessions for GPs
- Health kiosks in GP surgeries, to measure blood pressure and weight
- Improved cancer screening services and encouraged uptake
- Rolling out additional NHS health-checks (starting in the south east of the borough)