Women's health plan

The Women’s Health Plan underpins actions to improve women’s health inequalities by raising awareness around women’s health, improving access to health care and reducing inequalities in health outcomes for girls and women, both for sex-specific conditions and in women’s general health.

2 Women in Scotland today

Around 400,000 women in Scotland are of menopausal age.

In Scotland over a third of the female workforce is over 50.

Average life expectancy at birth for a woman in Scotland is 81.1 years.

In 2020 63% of women in Scotland were between 16 and 64, and 21% were 65 and over.

It is estimated that endometriosis affects 1.5 million (1 in ten) women in the UK of reproductive age, and it takes an average of 8.5 years to diagnose.

61% of unpaid carers are women.

In 2020 there were 46,809 live births in Scotland.

Almost 1 in 10 deaths in women in Scotland each year are caused by ischaemic heart disease.

Women's life expectancy at birth in the most deprived areas is 75.6 years, compared to 85.6 years in the least deprived areas.

In the most affluent areas of Scotland, women experience 25.1 more years of good health compared to the most deprived areas.

In 2019 1.35 million women in Scotland were in employment.

In 2020, 13,815 terminations of pregnancy were recorded in Scotland (13.4 per 1000 women aged 15-44).

In Scotland, women aged under 25 are the group most at risk of being diagnosed with an STI.

51% of Scotland's population are women.

Heart disease is the leading cause of maternal death in the UK.

Over three quarters of the overall NHSScotland workforce are women.

In 2019-20 around 400 women were in prison in Scotland on an average day.

37% of women in Scotland report living with a limiting long-term condition or disability.

The average age at which a woman will reach menopause is 51.

In 2020 the termination rate was 2.2 times higher in the most deprived areas compared to the least deprived areas.

Women make up an estimated 83% of the social care workforce in Scotland.

On average, the life expectancy of women with a learning disability is 18 years shorter than for women in the general population.

Part-time employment accounts for 41.2 % of all women's employment compared with 12.4% of all men's employment.

Twelve is the average age at which a woman has her first period.

It is estimated that there are currently 300,000 people in Scotland living with osteoporosis, a condition which is more common in women than men.

Death from stroke is more common for women than men.


Email: womenshealthplan@gov.scot

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