Men’s Health

In most parts of the world, health outcomes among boys and men continue to be substantially worse than among girls and women (WHO,2014). There is growing  awareness and concern about the burden of ill health experienced by men in Northern Ireland (MHFI, 2011). Life expectancy at birth in 2015 – 2017 was 78.5 years for males and 82.3 years for females. Healthy life expectancy at birth in 2015 – 2017 was 59.1 years for males and 60.3 years for females (DOH, 2018).

  • 20% of males smoke. (down from 25% in 2010/2011)
    17% of females smoke. (down from 23% in 2010/2011)
  • Over four-fifths of males (83%) were drinkers with a tenth of males (9%) reporting that they thought they drank quite a lot or heavily. Almost a fifth of male drinkers (16%) drank on 3 or more days per week.
    Three-quarters of females (76%) were drinkers, with (2%) reporting that they thought they drank quite a lot of heavily. A tenth of female drinkers (10%) drank on 3 or more days per week.
  • 42% of males were overweight.
    32% of females were overweight.  (DOH, 2020)
  • Suicide rates per 100,000 people in UK and Ireland was reported at 28 Men in Northern Ireland.
    Suicide rates per 100,000 people in UK and Ireland was reported at 9.5 Women in Northern Ireland. (Samaritans 2019)

  • International Men's Health Day 2021

    For the first time, Northern Ireland’s six Health and Social Care Trusts, the Public Health Agency, local councils, universities and voluntary sector organisations have joined forces to organise an event to mark International Men’s Day 2021.

    This webinar took on the 18th November 2021, from 10.00-11.30am, and is titled ‘Turning it Around’.

    Special guest speakers were former Newcastle United teenage prodigy Paul Ferris, who unfortunately couldn’t fulfil his promise due to injury, but later became the club’s Head of Medical Department, and Oisin McConville, six time All-Ireland Senior Club Championship winner with his club Crossmaglen Rangers and All-Ireland Senior Football champion with Armagh, who suffered from a gambling addiction and has since helped hundreds of athletes in the UK and Ireland as a trained addiciton counsellor and public speaker.

  • Men's Health in the South Eastern HSC Trust area

    South East Men’s Health Forum was established in 2015. The group supports the development of new approaches to engage with and inform men about health issues, provides a forum for sharing information on local initiatives and identifies local need. The aim is to improve the health and wellbeing of men, the group is affiliated to Men’s Health Forum Ireland. To date the Forum has organised four Men’s Health Week Campaigns, 2 Men’s Health Conferences and Engage Training for those working with men.

    For further information please contact Brien Frazer, Email:

  • What are the threats to men's health?

    Women outlive men, and that gap is widening. On average, women outlive men by more than five years.

    The Office of National Statistics reports the following as the leading causes of male deaths in the UK from 2001 to 2018.

    Cardiovascular disease

    In Northern Ireland today, 225,000 people live with CVD. Around 19% of all premature deaths in Northern Ireland – 1,100 a year – are caused by CVD.

    Information on signs and symptoms along with preventative advice can be found HERE.


    Every year around 6,840 men in Northern Ireland are diagnosed with cancer. Up to half of all cancers can be prevented with a healthier lifestyle.

    Cancer Focus NI has a wide range of cancer prevention services to help make better choices for healthy lifestyles.

    Cerebrovascular disease

    Cerebrovascular disease refers to a group of conditions, diseases, and disorders that affect the blood vessels and blood supply to the brain.

    In Northern Ireland, around 4,000 people every year have a stroke while around 36,000 people are living with the long term effects of stroke.

    Find out what you can do to reduce your risk

    Additional information

    Respiratory disease

    Respiratory diseases affect parts of the body involved with breathing, like the lungs and airways. These include asthma, COPD, pulmonary fibrosis, and pneumonia, amongst others.

    Respiratory illnesses accounted for 14% of all deaths recorded in NI last year.

    Find out more about respiratory disease


    Suicide statistics provide an indicator of mental health. Provisional data collected by the ONS between 2001 to 2018 indicated  suicide and injury or poisoning of undetermined intent was the leading cause of death for males aged 20 to 34 years in the UK, for all years observed, accounting for 27.1% of deaths.

    For mental health support and information visit AWARE NI or AMH.

    Lifeline is the Northern Ireland crisis response helpline for people who are experiencing distress or despair, you can contact them on 0808 808 8000

    For more information on men’s health please contact:

  • Male Domestic abuse’
  • Aim of Men’s Health Week

    The aims of Men’s Health Week are to:

    • Heighten awareness of preventable health problems of males of all ages
    • Support men and boys to engage in healthier lifestyle choices and activities
    • Encourage the early detection and treatment of health difficulties in males

    We also hope to encompass ‘Take 5’ ways to wellbeing;

    • Connect with peers and friends and build connections
    • Learn something new, or revive an old skill
    • Take notice of the seasons and sense the environment around you
    • Be active, play a game, swim, cycle or dance
    • Give a simple gift every day e.g. a smile, a nod, volunteer to help someone
  • International Men's Health Week 2019

    During 2019, the theme for the island of Ireland was: ‘Men’s Health Matters’ and the call to action was ‘Make the Time, Take the Time’.

    The South Eastern Men’s Health Forum worked in partnership to plan events throughout the South Eastern HSC Trust area to organise a variety of events for men of all ages, to enjoy, reflect, learn, relax, take time and especially think about their own health and wellbeing.

    Encompassing the Take 5 ways to wellbeing approach, men were invited to ‘Make the Time and Take the Time’ to improve their health by participating in one of the many organised activities. These activities included: health checks, health awareness events, walks, 5 a-side football, smoking cessation, Men’s Shed, allotment visits, coffee and connect with peers, bicycle maintenance, creative carpentry, photography, writing and singing.

    You can view a copy of the 2019 Man Manual by clicking here


  • SEHSCT (Staff) Men's Health Champion 2019

    On the run up to Men’s Health Week 2019 we held a competition to find a new Men’s Health Champion to take over from last years winner, Richard Walker, Service Lead, Transport. Staff were encouraged to nominate a male colleague who had made a lifestyle change to improve their health and inspire others. We received lots of entries but there could only be one winner…….Chris Dickey!

    You can watch Chris’s inspirational video here

  • SEHSCT (Staff) Men's Health Week Photography Competition 2019

    On the run up to Men’s Health Week 2019 we ran a photography competition for staff to showcase their talents. The competition was based on the principles of Take 5: Be Active, Keep Learning, Give, Take Notice and Connect.

    The quality of the entries was extremely high, giving the judges a very hard task to pick out the winner – Ivan Dinsmore, Children’s Services

  • Resources

    Useful links:

    Directory of services to help improve mental health and emotional wellbeing

    Men’s Health Directory

    Men’s Health in Northern Ireland: Tackling the root cause of mental (ill) health

    E male matters newsletter

    MaleMenu – information on topics directly affecting men

    Other sources of information:

    Men’s Advisory Project

    For men experiencing domestic abuse and relationship breakdown

    Telephone: (028) 9024 1929


    Cancer Focus – Man Alive on site screening bus

    Telephone: (028) 9066 3281

    Man Matters 

    Telephone: (028) 9032 9718