People in Republic more positive about health than Northern neighbours

Census comparison shows parity in terms of numbers with third level degrees

People in the Republic are far more positive about their health status than their neighbours in the North, according to a comparison of 2011 census data from the two jurisdictions. Photograph: Getty Images.

People in the Republic are far more positive about their health status than their neighbours in the North, according to a comparison of 2011 census data from the two jurisdictions. Photograph: Getty Images.

Thu, Jun 12, 2014, 16:04

People living in the Republic of Ireland are far more positive about their health status than their neighbours in the North, according to a comparison of 2011 census data from the two jurisdictions.

The study by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) and the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) shows clear differences between the two jurisdictions.

It found the proportion of those in the Republic who considered their health to be good or very good (62 per cent and 61 per cent of males and females respectively) was considerably higher than in the North (49 per cent and 47 per cent of males and females respectively).

At the opposite end of the scale, a total of 102,100 (5.6 per cent) persons in Northern Ireland felt that their health was bad or very bad compared with 69,700 (1.6 per cent) in Ireland, which the report said indicated very different perceptions of poor health between the jurisdictions.

Perceived rates of poor health rates were highest in the North in Belfast (8.1 per cent) and in Limerick (2.7 per cent) in the Republic.

In terms of employment, the report shows the rate of joblessness in the Republic (16 per cent) in 2011 was more than double that of the North (7.5 per cent).

In Northern Ireland, unemployment among males was 10 per cent, compared with 19 per cent in the Republic.

Among women it was 5.2 per cent in Northern Ireland and 12 per cent in the Republic.

In terms of education, the percentage of people with a third level degree or higher stood at 24 per cent in both the Republic and Northern Ireland.

Some 37 per cent of people in the Republic were not educated beyond lower secondary level, compared to 41 per cent in Northern Ireland.

The difference was linked to the North’s older population.

In terms of housing, detached houses or bungalows remained the most common type of accommodation in both jurisdictions in 2011, accounting for 38 per cent of households in the North (housing 43 per cent of the population) and 42 per cent in the Republic (housing 46 per cent of the population).

Apartments and flats accounted for 11 per cent of dwellings in the Republic, compared with 8.9 per cent of those in the North.

The census found some 300,000 dwellings (including holiday homes) in the State had no usual residents and were vacant at the time of the 2011 census, representing 15 per cent of the housing stock.

Some 45,000 units were vacant in Northern Ireland, accounting for 6 per cent of dwellings.

The most striking difference between both jurisdictions was for non-private or social rented accommodation accounted for 15 per cent of dwellings in Northern Ireland, compared to 8.7 per cent in the Republic.

The total number of housing units increased by 127 per cent in Ireland between 1971 and 2011, while Northern Ireland witnessed an increase of 65 per cent over the period.

Some 18 per cent of households in the Republic and 23 per cent of those in Northern Ireland did not have access to a car or van.

Meath, at 90 per cent, had the highest proportion of households with access to at least one car or van, while Dublin city had the lowest rate of 62 per cent.

In Northern Ireland, Belfast had the lowest rate, at 60 per cent, while Magherafelt and Banbridge had the highest rate of 86 per cent.

A total of 14,800 persons regularly commuted between the jurisdictions for work or study, with 6,500 travelling to the Republic from the North and 8,300 travelling in the opposite direction.