Employees ‘healthy’ in work until just 59 in England, study shows
Written by News on 01/07/2020
People in England have a “healthy life expectancy” at work until they are aged just 59, far below the age to qualify for a state pension, research suggests.
The study, published in The Lancet Public Health, analysed data from 15,000 men and women aged 50 and over from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing.
Participants were tracked between 2002 and 2013 for the research led by Keele University.
The team aimed to assess workers’ “healthy working life expectancy” from when they were aged 50.
They found differences in healthy working life expectancy by sex, deprivation and where people live.
Men can expect to be healthy and in work for an average of 10.9 years from the age of 50, while women can expect just 8.3 years.
The study also found that self-employed people can expect longer healthy work-life expectancy, as well as those who do not have to do manual labour as part of their work.
Meanwhile, those in the northeast of England were found to have a healthy working life expectancy three years lower, on average, compared to people in the South East.
“Adults aged 50 years in England have an average healthy working life expectancy lower than the number of years to the state pension age,” the authors concluded.
The researchers expressed concern about the health of the older workforce as the state pension age continues to rise, and called for a variety of interventions to help people extend their “healthy working lives”.
Lead author of the study Marty Parker said that people will find it “challenging” to work for longer as the state pension age goes up.
He said: “Poor health and a lack of appropriate job opportunities are a major reason for early retirement, sickness absence from work, and reduced productivity while at work.
“Older workers – especially those in more deprived areas and in manual jobs – will benefit from proactive approaches to improve health and workplace environments.”
In November 2018, the state pension age was 65, but this is gradually increasing and now depends on when people are born.
Those born after 6 April 1978 have a state pension age of 68.
(c) Sky News 2020: Employees ‘healthy’ in work until just 59 in England, study shows