Share of DALYS among those under 70 years in UK by select diseases 2012

This statistic describes the percent distribution of disability-adjusted life-years in the United Kingdom among persons aged under 70 as of 2012, by condition and disease. Cardiovascular diseases contributed to 10.2 of all DALYs among those under 70 years of age. People with mental health problems have been found to have higher rates of physical illnesses than the general population. Mental health can cost up to 13 billion pounds per year and is listed as one of the most common reasons to claim disability benefits in Britain.

Disability-adjusted life-years

Mental health disorders and cancers are among the highest in terms of disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs) in the United Kingdom as of 2012 leading to 20.6 DALYs and 16.9 DALYs, respectively. DALYs are calculated by combining the years of life lost due to premature mortality and the years lost due to disability caused by the condition. In high-income countries, chronic diseases contribute to high DALY values. For example, cardiovascular diseases are among the leading causes of death worldwide at 17.3 million deaths in 2012. Chronic diseases can create indirect costs that can be a major hindrance in low-income families. Reduced income from loss of productivity, forgoing earnings from those that must care for the patient, and potential lost opportunity in young family members who leave school to care for the ill or to help household economy are indirect costs that chronic diseases can incur.

Neuropsychiatric conditions account for almost 15 percent of the global disease burden. However, this value is suspected to be much higher due to the complex relationships between physical and mental illness. It is also quite common for those with mental health disorders to be experiencing more than one disorder. People living in Alabama and California have some of the highest levels of poor mental health in the country, at 40.1 percent and 39.1 percent of the population reporting this condition, respectively, as of 2012. In the United States, 4.4 percent of individuals between 55 and 64 years of age have reported experiencing serious psychological distress.

Distribution of disability-adjusted life-years among people under 70 years in the UK as of 2012, by disease

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Release date

August 2014


United Kingdom (Great Britain)

Survey time period


Supplementary notes

DALY: Disability-adjusted life-years.
A DALY is calculated by the sum of years of life lost to premature death and years lost to disability for those living with the condition.

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