Local health challenges
In Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, there are particular population challenges in meeting the demand for health and social care services.
- Telford and Wrekin has a large, younger urban population with some rural areas. Telford is ranked among the 30% most deprived populations in England. Telford and Wrekin is home to around 179,900 people with the fastest growing population being aged 65+.
- Shropshire covers a large rural population with problems of physical isolation and low population density (0.96 people per hectare compared to 4.09 in England) and has a mix of rural and urban aging populations. Shropshire has a population of approximately 310,000 people and a higher percentage of older people than the national average. (2011 Census).
- Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin has the least ethnically diverse population: the lowest black and minority ethnic groups population levels across Midlands and East with 95.9% of the population identified as white British/Irish (2011 Census).
- In Shropshire the population of people aged over 65 has increased by 25% in just 10 years. Over 44% of residents are over the age of 50 and around 23% of Shropshire’s population are aged 65+, this compares with a West Midlands and England figure of 18% (2011 Census).
- The number of people with dementia or mobility issues which mean they are unable to manage at least one activity on their own is expected to rise significantly with the increase in the elderly population. Between 2017 and 2035 the number of people aged 65+ with dementia is expected to increase by 80%. Those people who are aged 65 plus and unable to manage at least one activity on their own is projected to increase by 63%. Demand for services is shifting with greater need for services to support frailer people in the community with home-based health and wellbeing self-management and building resilience.
- Long-term conditions are on the rise due to changing lifestyles. This means we need to move the emphasis away from services that support short-term, episodic illness and infections towards earlier intervention to improve health and deliver sustained continuing support in the community.
- Along with an ageing population Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin has the third lowest fertility rates across Midlands and East (ONS Statistics: Gov.uk data June 2016).