Census reveals the Irish town where residents report the worst health

MORE than one in eight of the population has a disability, and the number of carers providing regular unpaid help for a family or friend has risen to almost 196,000, the latest Census results show.

The CSO also says there are 3,800 children aged under 15 providing care, accounting for 1.9pc of all carers - writes independent.ie.

The Central Statistics Office release on health, disability and carers from Census 2016 also shows that most people, or 87pc of the population, consider themselves to have ‘very good’ or ‘good’ health.

The census results clearly show the decline in general health with age, with 79pc of 15-19 year olds in very good health, compared with 58.6pc of those aged 40-44 and 31.3pc of the 65 to 69 age group.

Almost nine out of ten people in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown indicated their health was very good/good - the highest in the country. It was followed by Meath, Kildare and Cork County.

People living in Longford reported the worst health. Almost 3pc of people in Longford said that they had bad or very bad health.

This was followed by Tullamore (2.5pc) and Wexford (2.5pc), Cavan (2.5pc) and Enniscorthy (2.5pc).

The towns who said their health was good or very good are Malahide (92.5pc) Carrigaline (92.4), Maynooth (91.8), Greystones (91.4) and Celbridge (91.2).

The Census also shows a sharp rise in the number of people with a disability, up almost 48,000 to 643,131 people – or 13.5pc of the population – between 2011 and 2016.

The figures were split 51.6pc for women, and 48.4pc for men.

Among those aged under 20, there was an increase of 11,828 persons (15.6pc) with a disability since 2011. This represented a disability rate of 6.7pc in this group (up from 6pc in 2011).

One in ten of the population below 45 years of age had a disability, rising to 20pc by age 60.

Disability was more common amongst males in all age categories up to age 24, peaking in the 5-9 age groups where there were almost twice as many disabled boys (14,964) as girls (7,887).

By administrative counties, Cork City had the highest rate of people with a disability at 18.1pc – the lowest rates were in Fingal, Meath and Monaghan.

The Census suggests that the largest increase in disability was those with a psychological or emotional condition which rose by 27,511 to 123,515 in 2016, an increase of 28.7pc.

One in five people with a disability lived alone, most of whom (55pc) were aged 65 or over.

It also shows that educational attainment amongst people with disabilities was much lower than that of the general population at all levels. Amongst those aged 15 to 50, 13.7pc had completed no higher than primary level education, compared with 4.2pc of the general population.

Some 37.0pc had completed third level education compared with 53.4pc of all those aged 15-50.

There were 176,445 persons with a disability in the labour force, giving a labour force participation rate of 30.2pc compared with 61.4pc for the overall population.

The CSO also said there were more female than male carers, 60pc of the total.

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