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disabilityIn the last Census in 2011, people were asked if their day-to-day activities were limited because of a health problem or disability which has lasted, or is expected to last, at least 12 months - the interpretation of what a health problem or disability is was left up to the respondent. 22,917 or 11.4% of Gateshead people said that, yes, their activities were limited a lot, and a further 21,435 or 10.7% of people said their activities were limited a little.

Activities Limited By HealthThe wards with the highest proportion of people whose activities were limited either a lot or a little are Felling, High Fell, Lamesley, and Chowdene - all of which are significantly higher than the Gateshead average [Map - Ward daily activities limited by health]. Of working age people (aged 16-64), 10,669 or 5.3% said that their activities were limited a lot, and 10,831 or 5.4% said they were limited a little.[1]

The Projecting Adult Needs and Service Information (PANSI) model uses older Health Survey for England data from 2001 but projects forward the number of people aged 18-64 who could have either a moderate or serious physical disability. The model suggests that there may 9,745 people with a moderate disability and a further 2,892 with a serious disability. By 2035 the model predicts that the number will reduce to around 9,214 and 2,716 respectively.[2]

A less subjective measure of disability that is sometimes used as a proxy is the number of claimants of Disability Living Allowance (DLA). In August 2018 there were 4,500 DLA claimants for physical disabilities (excluding those claiming for 'learning difficulties', psychosis, psychoneurosis, personality disorder, dementia and behavioural disorders) in Gateshead. 13% or 580 of them were aged under 16. 20% or 890 were of working age (16 to 64), and the remaining 2,970 or 67% were aged 65 and over.[3]

DLA Claimants

Of patients surveyed in a GP practice survey, 49% of Gateshead respondents said they had a long-standing health problem, disability or infirmity.[4]

In January 2018, Gateshead's school census identified 132 children and young people (aged 5-15) with physical disabilities.[5]

workThe employment rate for disabled people is far lower than for non-disabled. For example, in Gateshead just 45% of disabled people were in employment compared with 82% of non-disabled people. Gateshead's rate compares with the England average of 54%.[6] This no doubt has a knock on effect on household income as, across the UK, more (19%) families where someone is disabled live in low income households than in non-disabled families (15%). On a positive note, whilst the proportion of non-disabled families in low income households has remained fairly static over the last 10 years, the proportion of disabled families in low income households has decreased from 23% in 2002/03 to 19% in 2011/12 - so the gap is narrowing.[7]

Low Life Satisfaction39% of disabled people in the UK reported having low or very low life satisfaction, compared with 19% of non-disabled people.[8]

Only 37% of disabled people in the UK had been able to take part in moderate intensity level sport (participation in at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity level sport at least once in the past 4 weeks) in a 2011/12 survey.[9] This compares with 63% of non-disabled people.

[1] ONS Census 2011 (ONS and Local Health websites)

[2] PANSI Moderate or Serious Physical Disability, based on Health Survey for England 2001, 2014 based population projections for 2017 estimate (PANSI website)

[3] DWP DLA claimants by disabling condition, Aug 2018 (NOMIS website)

[4] HSCIC GP Patient Survey, 2010/11 (HSCIC website)

[5] Jan 2018 School Census, Gateshead Council

[6] ONS Annual Population Survey - EA core or work-limiting disabled, Sep 2018 (NOMIS website)

[7] DWP Family Resources Survey, 2011/12 - taken from 'Fulfilling Potential: making it happen for disabled people' data annex ( website)

[8] ONS Experimental Subjective Wellbeing Survey, 2011/12  - taken from 'Fulfilling Potential: making it happen for disabled people' data annex ( website)

[9] DCMS Taking Part Survey, 2011/12 - taken from 'Fulfilling Potential: making it happen for disabled people' data annex ( website)

Last modified on 12th March 2019

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