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World Health Organization : Year 2001 ; Assessment Document, A78510: Methods for Life Expectancy and Healthy Life Expectancy Uncertainty Analysis

By Joshua A. Salomon

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Book Id: WPLBN0000189046
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 0.3 MB
Reproduction Date: 2005
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Title: World Health Organization : Year 2001 ; Assessment Document, A78510: Methods for Life Expectancy and Healthy Life Expectancy Uncertainty Analysis  
Author: Joshua A. Salomon
Language: English
Subject: Health., Public health, Wellness programs
Collections: Medical Library Collection, World Health Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: World Health Organization


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Salomon, J. A. (n.d.). World Health Organization : Year 2001 ; Assessment Document, A78510. Retrieved from

Medical Reference Publication

1. Introduction WHO introduced healthy life expectancy as a summary measure of the level of health attained by populations in the World Health Report 2000 (1, 2). The World Health Report 2001 (3) reports estimates of total life expectancy (LE) and healthy life expectancy (HALE) by sex for the 191 Member States of WHO. Calculation of HALE for WHO Member States requires three inputs. First, life expectancy at each age is calculated using the standard life table approach (4, 5). Second, estimates of the prevalence of various states of health at each age are required (2, 6). Finally, a method of valuing this time compared to full health must be developed (6). Part of the utility of LE and HALE is that each provides an easily interpretable summary of numerous different pieces of information – age-specific mortality rates in the case of LE, with the addition of information on non-fatal health outcomes in HALE. As such, they also represent the product of numerous sources of uncertainty. Presentation of the results in the World Health Report include intervals around the LE and HALE estimates in order to convey the levels of uncertainty in these estimates due to limitations in the data inputs. This discussion paper describes the methods used to quantify uncertainty in the various inputs to LE and HALE estimates, and how these uncertainties were incorporated in intervals around the reported measures.

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