Life expectancy

  • Life expectancy continues to rise

    Life expectancy at birth in the Flemish Region for the entire legally resident population stood at 82.4 years in 2018. Life expectancy is 80.3 years for men and 84.4 years for women.   

    Between 2000 and 2018, an increased life expectancy at birth has been set forth: from 75.5 years in the year 2000 to 80.3 years in 2018 (+4.8 years) for men; from 81.4 years to 84.4 years (+3.0 years) for women.  

     

    The annual increase in life expectancy at birth is higher for men than for women. In the last 3 years (2016-2018), the average annual increase was slightly less than one season for men (+0.22 years) and half a season for women (+0.15 years).  

  • Higher life expectancy for women also at older ages

    At birth, women in the Flemish Region had a surplus life expectancy of just over 4 years compared to men in 2018. Women maintain their higher life expectancy compared to men also in old age: at the age of 65, women have a surplus of +3.1 years; at the age of 85, the surplus is equal to +1.1 years.   

     

    Similarly, there is progression or an increase in life expectancy at older ages: at the age of 65, about one year has been added between 2010 and 2018 (+1.0 years for men, +0.8 years for women); at the age of 85,  six months have been added (+0.5 years for men, +0.4 years for women). 

  • Highest life expectancy for men in the districts of Maaseik, Turnhout and Leuven

    Life expectancy at birth varied between 78.9 and 80.9 years for men in the 22 Flemish districts in the 2016-2018 period. This is a difference of 2 years. 

     

    Life expectancy at birth for men is highest in the districts of Maaseik, Turnhout and Leuven, and lowest in the districts of Oudenaarde, Dendermonde and Aalst. 

  • Highest life expectancy for women in the districts of Tielt, Roeselare and Maaseik

    Life expectancy at birth for women in the 2016-2018 period varied between 85.0 and 83.7 years in the 22 Flemish districts, a difference of 1.3 years. 

     

    Life expectancy at birth for women is highest in the districts of Tielt, Roeselare and Maaseik, and lowest in the districts of Antwerp, Dendermonde and Ostend. 

  • Flanders in European second tier for life expectancy

    Within Belgium, life expectancy at birth for the legally resident population in 2017 was highest in the Flemish Region (80.1 years for men, 84.3 years for women). In comparison with men from the Walloon Region, Flemish men can count on an extra life expectancy of 3 years, and for women this is 1.9 years. Compared to inhabitants of the Brussels-Capital Region, the difference is +1.6 years for men and +0.7 years for women. 

     

    Within the European Union (EU28), Belgium is in the mid range in terms of life expectancy at birth for the usually resident population, with a value above the European average (+0.7 years). This surplus, which is favourable for Belgium, is found among both men (+0.9 years) and women (+0.4 years). 

     

    Highest and lowest values for the different EU member states vary considerably: for men there is an 11-year difference in life expectancy between Italy (80.8 years) and Latvia (69.8 years); for women the difference is almost 8 years, between Spain (86.1 years) and Bulgaria (78.4 years). For this general measure of the population's health we generally find Southern European countries at the top (Spain, Italy, Malta, Cyprus, and also France) and East European countries at the bottom of the ranking (Hungary, Lithuania, Romania, Latvia and Bulgaria).  

Definitions

Life expectancy: indicates how many life-years a person can expect to live at a certain age if he were subject to the observed mortality rates per age of the observation period for the rest of his life. 

Legally resident population (under Belgian law): does not include persons registered in the waiting register (for asylum seekers). 

Usually resident population (according to the European Regulation (EC) no. 862/2007): also includes persons registered in the waiting register if they have been in the country for a long time (at least 12 months, or have the intention to do so). 

Publication date

10 September 2019

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