Reduction in the main causes of premature deaths in the city

A slight reduction in health inequalities between neighbourhoods in terms of life expectancy has also been reported, as has the fact that half of the city’s population suffers high noise levels, a perception on the increase in the Eixample and Ciutat Vella districts.

09/11/2017 19:14h


The annual ‘Health in Barcelona’ report, compiled by the Barcelona Public Health Agency (ASPB), outlines the state of health among Barcelona’s citizens as measured by socio-economic and physical indicators, offering the results for 2016. “This report is a good snapshot of the state of health of Barcelona’s citizens. It allows us to act better and plan city policies better”, noted the Deputy Mayor for Social Rights, Laia Ortiz.

Life expectancy and mortality

Life expectancy in 2015 (2016 data still not available) was 80.8 years for men and 86.6 years from women, figures which were very similar to the previous year (80.5 and 86.7 respectively in 2014). Inequalities in terms of life expectancy between city neighbourhoods is measured using specific methodology, the results available pointing to a halt or slowing up in differences. The main causes of premature deaths also remained stable or dropped slightly.

Living conditions in Barcelona

Some 9% of households live in severe material poverty. According to social class, poverty is concentrated among households with no qualifications, the figure standing at 27.4% compared to 1.2% among better-off classes. At the same time, 10.6% of Barcelona households suffer energy poverty (23.4% among the most underprivileged social classes, compared to 4.8% among those better off).


Some 64.2% of the city’s population only use public health services, but that percentage is very different between the districts, the two extremes being Sarrià – Sant Gervasi (25.9%) and Nou Barris (83.4%). The use of emergency hospital services in the city in 2016 came out at 342 per 1,000 people among men, and 380 per 1,000 people among women.

Physical environment

Some 68% of the city’s population are exposed to levels of nitrogen oxide which exceed the maximum levels set out by the European Union and the World Health Organisation.

In terms of noise pollution, the city has a map showing perceived noise, based on surveys among the population, as this is a factor which affects people’s health. Some 47.8% of the population state there is a lot of noise in their neighbourhood. The data for 2016 shows that in the districts of Ciutat Vella and L’Eixample, seven out of ten people state there is a lot of noise where they live.