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Embargo: 3 November 2010, 00.01.

Men’s lives too short says new charity campaign

Too many men are still dying far too young. 22% of men in England and Wales die before the age of 65 and 42% before 75. By comparison, 13% of women die before 65 and 26% before 75.

Almost 100,000 men are dying prematurely (before 75 years) each year compared to about 66,000 women. By comparison, Wembley Stadium has a capacity of 90,000 and the British Army has 102,000 full-time personnel.

The Men’s Health Forum is calling for action to tackle men’s poor health after their new campaign report Lives Too Short – the State of Men’s Health shows that too many men die young and that men are hit particularly badly by problems like suicide and cancer.

76% of people who kill themselves are men and men are 70% more likely to get a cancer that affects both men and women.

The charity’s Lives Too Short campaign will be launched in parliament at a meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Men’s Health [Wednesday 3rd November, 3.30pm].

The campaign report shows that men in poorer areas die much younger than wealthier men – in Kensington and Chelsea men’s life expectancy is nearly 11 years longer than in Blackpool.

The report also shows that, despite their health problems, men make much less use of primary care services than women – on average, men visit the GP 20% less often.

The Men’s Health Forum has spent 15 years researching how best to tackle men’s health and is now calling for action in five keys areas to:

• Tackle men’s mental health problems
• Get more men physically active
• Address men’s high cancer rates
• Improve men’s use of primary health services
• Involve more workplaces in men’s health and wellbeing.

As part of the campaign, the Men’s Health Forum has launched a new Pledge, asking organisations and individuals working with men in any way to show their support for tackling these problems. The Royal College of Nursing, the Royal Society for Public Health, Coventry City Council and Sustrans are among the first organisations to have signed the Pledge.

Peter Baker, chief executive of the Men’s Health Forum said:

“We’re delighted that several major organisations have already signed our new men’s health Pledge. Action on just five key issues could make a real difference to men as well as their families and friends and reduce the tragic waste of lives cut short by preventable problems. We want others to show their support by backing the Lives Too Short Pledge.”

“The government is re-organising the NHS and is about to change policy on public health so it’s vitally important that it recognises the toll of poor health on men’s lives and works with charities, workplaces and communities to take effective action to tackle it.”

The Lives Too Short report opens up into a poster highlighting the key statistics and what can be done to tackle men’s poor health. It is being sent to a wide range of health organisations and politicians.

All organisations interested in health and people working with men in any way can sign up to the Lives Too Short Pledge to show their support. The Pledge is online at



1. The MHF is a charity that provides an independent and authoritative voice for male health in England and Wales and tackles the issues and inequalities affecting the health and well-being of men and boys.
2. The full range of statistics used in the campaign and links to the MHF’s work on the issues highlighted in Lives Too Short are online at
3. The MHF is online at: for health professionals and policy makers, and for fast, free, independent health info from the Men’s Health Forum.

Page created on November 3rd, 2010

Page updated on November 3rd, 2010