65th Anniversary of the NHS

5th July 2013 saw the 65th anniversary of the founding of the NHS which has improved and prolonged the lives of millions of people in our country. 

The establishment of the NHS has done more than any other single event in history to close the health gap between rich and poor. But while advances in healthcare mean people are living longer - they are all too often living for longer in poorer health because of our enduring health inequalities.

At the recent NHSScotland Event, we highlighted the unfairness which means for every stop on a short railway journey across Glasgow life expectancy drops.

In the affluent suburb of Jordanhill men can expect to live to an average of 75.8 years and women to 82.1 years. A number of stops down the Argyll line at Bridgeton the male life expectancy is just 61.9 years and 74.6 years for women.


Map showing the difference in life expectancy in different areas of Glasgow. Each stop on the Argyle line travelling east across Glasgow represents a drop in life expectancy of 1.7 years for men and 1.2 years for women.











Source: McCartney G. Illustrating Glasgow’s health inequalities. JECH 2010; doi 10.1136/jech.2010.120451. Adapted, with permission, from the Strathclyde Partnership for Transport travel map

Closing Scotland’s health gap is now one of the biggest challenges facing us all. 
The NHS in Scotland has come a long way in the last 65 years and is delivering world-class care to the people of Scotland. We now need to ensure we collaborate with colleagues in local government, the third sector and throughout the country if we want to reduce health inequalities and build the fairer, healthier Scotland we all want to see.

Visit the Our NHSScotland website to take a trip through time to see how it has touched the lives of each and every one of us and see what's happening to mark the Anniversary itself.

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