Health Adjusted Life Expectancy

Health Adjusted Life Expectancy (HALE) is a relatively new indicator that represents the number of expected years of life equivalent to years lived in full health based on the average experience in a population. Therefore, HALE is not only a measure of quantity of life but also a measure of quality of life. More accurately, HALE measures health expectancy as opposed to simply life expectancy.

Figure 11 provides HALE information for the Alberta population based on income and gender at birth, and at 65 years of age. The graph demonstrates the impact of income (divided equally into three groups) on the health adjusted life expectancy and shows that Albertans born in families with higher income tend to live healthier and longer lives; the gaps are narrower for women than for men. The graph also shows that at age 65, income has no impact on the health adjusted life expectancy of women and it only has an impact on the lowest income group for men. Later in this report, data on income are presented, demonstrating that First Nations tend to have lower income than other Albertans and Canadians. Income will also be correlated with education and employment, see Sections 9 and 10.

Figure 11: Health Adjusted Life Expectancy by Income Group for Albertans (2001)