Income and Health: Bridging the Gap in Southern Health-Santé Sud

Closer lookMedical care is essential, but did you know that 75% of the things that can help make us healthy are not part of the health care system?1 

One of the top contributors to one’s health is income. This is abundantly clear throughout the  Southern Health-Santé Sud’s 2019 Community Health Assessment (CHA), the five year report which was recently published providing a picture of the overall health of our region. The CHA report looks at data for the whole region, but it also breaks down into 23 smaller geographic districts to get a closer look at differences among communities.

In Southern Health-Santé Sud, the average household income is $61 000. While this might seem ‘average’ in terms of stats, it is important to note that the income gap between the highest and the lowest districts is $52 000. Imagine how that amount of money might affect the options and choices for a household! Regardless of where we are on the spectrum - income gap affects us all. As income goes down, people get sicker and die earlier. This is evidenced in the infographic below. For example, in our region, there is a 12-year gap in life expectancy between women in the lowest and highest income districts.   

Why is this Important to Know

The actions needed to address social and economic factors to reduce and eliminate health inequities go beyond the health care system.  They are important in order to improve the health of all Manitobans. The CHA provides data to help support evidence-informed strategies and actions. Southern Health-Santé Sud is committed to collaborating with partners and stakeholders  in addressing health inequities,  together leading the way for a healthier tomorrow. 

1Senate of Canada.Subcommittee on Population Health of the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology. Population health policy:  Issues and options, April 2008. Available here

TEST SH SS CHA 2019 Income Gap 002

To access the full report:

  • The complete document is available here.
  • The Executive Summary is available here.