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EU-SILC 2022: Well-being, Social and Health Indicators
NR 055/2024
Release Date: 25 March 2024
In 2022, the majority of persons living in private households perceived their general health as being good (76.7 per cent), with 31 per cent of people stating that they suffer from a chronic illness or condition.

Top view of medical stethoscope and icon family on cyan background. Health care insurance concept. 3d rendering

Introduction

The European Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) survey is an annual exercise undertaken by the National Statistics Office (NSO) among persons residing in private households in Malta and Gozo. The survey collects several indicators related to general health and well-being.

Health indicators

In 2022, 76.7 per cent of the persons living in private households perceived their general health as being good (Chart 1). Males were more likely to perceive their general health as being good (79.5 per cent), when compared to their female counterparts (73.8 per cent) (Table 1). A little under a third of respondents (31.0 per cent) stated that they suffer from a chronic illness or condition1 (Chart 2, Table 2). Most individuals reported that they did not have any limitations in their daily activities because of health problems, with only 15.1 per cent indicating otherwise (Chart 3, Table 3).

¹ Chronic illness or conditions may include arthritis, allergies, high blood pressure, recurring migraine, chronic anxiety or depression, diabetes, and asthma.

Chart 1. Self-perceived general health status

Reference period: 2020-2022

No Data Found

Note: Refers to persons aged 16 and over, living in private households.

Chart 2. Share of persons suffering from chronic illnesses or conditions by sex

Reference period: 2020-2022

No Data Found

Note: Refers to persons aged 16 and over, living in private households.

Chart 3. Share of persons with limited activities because of health problems by sex

Reference period: 2020-2022

No Data Found

Note: Refers to persons aged 16 and over, living in private households.

The majority of individuals did not report having unmet needs for medical or dental examination or treatment, with only 2.8 per cent of individuals reporting otherwise. This was a decrease when compared to 2021 (4.3 per cent) and 2020 (3.0 per cent). Females were more likely to report an unmet need for a medical or dental examination or treatment at 2.9 per cent, a decrease of 2.0 percentage points when compared to 2021 (4.9 per cent), and an increase of 0.1 percentage points when compared to 2020 (2.8 per cent) (Chart 4, Table 4).

Chart 4. Share of persons who reported unmet needs for medical or dental examination/treatment by sex

Reference period: 2020-2022

No Data Found

The at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion rate (AROPE) defines the proportion/number of people who are at-risk-of-poverty or severely materially and socially deprived, or living in households with very low work intensity. In 2022, people who were at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion were less likely to perceive their general health as being good. In fact, only 57.9 per cent of the persons who were at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion perceived their general health as good, compared to 81.3 per cent of those respondents who were not at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion (Table 1).

When considering the main predictors of ill health and chronic illness, females, individuals over 65 years of age, and individuals at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion, were more likely to report suffering from chronic illness or conditions, and to experience limitations because of health problems. Such trends were also observed in 2021 and 2020 (Tables 2 and 3).

Well-being indicators

On a scale from 0 to 10, where 0 represents not at all satisfied, and 10 represents completely satisfied, an average score of 8.6 was reported by respondents with regard to their satisfaction with their personal relationships with family and friends. A mean score of 7.7 was reported with regard to their satisfaction with their current job, and a mean score of 7.4 was reported with regard to their satisfaction with their overall life. The lowest average scores were reported with regard to respondents’ satisfaction with their financial situation and with their time use, at 6.8. Respondents between 16 and 29 years of age reported a higher mean score with regard to overall life satisfaction (7.8), when compared to respondents aged 65 years and over (7.1). The highest mean score with regard to personal relationship satisfaction was reported by respondents aged between 18 and 29 years (8.7). Respondents who were at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion reported lower average scores with regard to their satisfaction with overall life, financial situation, current job, and personal relationships, when compared to those not at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion. On the other hand, a higher average score with regard to their satisfaction with time use was reported by these respondents.

The National Equivalised Income (NEI) of a household is defined as the household’s total disposable income divided by its ‘equivalent size’ (also referred to as consumption units). The NEI considers the size and age distribution of household members. In 2022, people within the highest equivalised income bracket reported higher mean values for satisfaction with overall life, financial situation, current job, and personal relationships. Conversely, a higher mean value for satisfaction with time use was reported by people within the lowest equivalised income bracket (Table 5a).

Chart 5. Perceived levels of satisfaction for certain well-being characteristics

Reference period: 2022

In general, respondents reported feelings of happiness (57.6 per cent) and calmness and peacefulness (47.1 per cent), most of the time. Feelings of nervousness and agitation were characteristics rarely experienced by 31.6 per cent of the respondents, and sometimes experienced by 31.2 per cent of the respondents (Chart 6).

Chart 6. Share of persons by frequency of feelings regarding certain quality-of-life characteristics

Reference period: 2022

No Data Found

Females were more likely to report that, most of the time, they experienced feelings of nervousness and agitation (13.6 per cent), being down in the dumps (4.0 per cent) and downheartedness and depression (5.2 per cent). On the other hand, males were more likely to report feelings of calmness and peacefulness (49.1 per cent) and happiness (58.8 per cent), most of the time. Respondents aged 65 years and over were more likely to feel, most of the time, down in the dumps (5.5 per cent) and downhearted and depressed (5.6 per cent). Feelings of nervousness and agitation were reported, most of the time, by persons aged between 30 and 64 years (12.3 per cent). Meanwhile, respondents between 16 and 17 years of age were more likely to feel calm and peaceful (57.6 per cent) and happy (68.3 per cent), most of the time.

Respondents who were at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion were more likely to report feelings of nervousness and agitation (2.8 per cent), down in the dumps (1.2 per cent), downheartedness and depression (1.5 per cent), and loneliness (3.1 per cent), all of the time, when compared to those not at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion (Table 6a).

In 2022, most individuals (95.1 per cent) felt that, if needed, they would receive material or non-material help2 from family, friends, colleagues, or other persons they knew (Table 7).

On a scale from 0 to 10, where 0 represents do not trust at all, and 10 represents trust completely, on average, the extent to which people trust others was reported at 5.1. On a scale from 0 to 10, where 0 represents not at all excluded, and 10 represents completely excluded, individuals seemed to perceive themselves as not being excluded from society. In fact, the mean score with regard to feelings of exclusion from society was reported at 2.2 (Table 8).

2 Material help includes money, loan or objects, whereas non-material help includes someone to talk to, help with doing something or collecting something.

Additional Tables and Charts

Methodological Notes

1. Background
The European Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) survey is an annual enquiry conducted by the National Statistics Office (NSO) among persons residing in private households in Malta and Gozo.
The main scope of this survey is to enable the compilation of statistics on income distribution, relative poverty, material deprivation and social exclusion. This survey has been carried out in Malta since 2005, under European Regulation (EU) No. 1177/2003. This Regulation establishes criteria which ensure the production of high quality and harmonised results at European level. As from 2020, EU-SILC started to be carried out under and new regulation: Regulation (EU) No. 2019/1700 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 10 October 2019 establishing a common framework for European statistics relating to persons and households, based on data at individual level collected from samples.
The survey is designed to collect detailed information on household characteristics, labour market, education, household income, material deprivation and social exclusion. The households’ wealth (assets) and gains/losses from capital transfers are not covered by this survey.
 
2. Sample size and response

The EU-SILC sample follows a rotational design whereby every household is surveyed for four consecutive years. This sampling methodology enhances consistency and thus allows for high quality cross-sectional and longitudinal analysis.

In 2022 the gross sample size was 4,891 households. Of these, 79 households were ineligible for the survey (i.e. addresses that did not actually exist, could not be located, non-residential addresses, permanently vacant dwellings or institutional households). Consequently, 4,812 households were approached for the interview. Of these, 4,163 completed the survey, resulting in a household response rate of 87 per cent. These households comprised 10,265 residents, of whom 8,921 were aged 16 and over.

The population figure used to gross up and to calibrate EU-SILC data refers to one calendar year prior to the survey year. Consequently, the population in EU-SILC 2022 refers to the number of persons living in private households as at end of 2021 which was estimated at 512,838.

3. Income reference period
The income reference year of the EU-SILC survey is one calendar year prior to the survey year. Therefore, the income collected in EU-SILC 2022 refers to calendar year 2021.
 
4. Concepts and definitions
General health was collected based upon the self-perception of the interviewed persons
 
A person is defined as a dependent child if s/he is:
●  under 18; 
● 18-24 years old and is economically inactive and living with at least one parent.
Otherwise, the person is referred to as an adult.
 

Equivalised disposable income (referred to also as national equivalised income) is defined as the household’s total disposable income divided by its “equivalent household size”, to take account of the size and composition of the household, and is attributed to each household member. For example, a household with two adults and two children aged less than 14, would have an equivalised household size of (1+0.5+0.3+0.3) = 2.1. If the total disposable income earned by the household is €20,000, then the household equivalised income would result in (€20,000/2.1) = €9,523.

The at-risk-of-poverty threshold is also referred to as the at-risk-of-poverty line or, simply, the poverty line. This is equivalent to 60 per cent of the median national equivalised income of persons living in private households.

The at-risk-of-poverty rate refers to the share of persons with an equivalised disposable income below the at-risk-of-poverty threshold.

5. Material and social deprivation

In 2017, a set of new Material and Social Deprivation (MSD) indicators were adopted by all the European Union (EU) Member States (Guio, 2017). The new indicators are the Material and Social deprivation (MSD) indicator and the Severe Material and Social Deprivation (SMSD) indicator. These indicators are based on 13 items: 7 household items and 6 personal items.
 
Household items:
●  face unexpected expenses; 
●  afford one week annual holiday away from home;
●  avoid arrears (in mortgage, rent, utility bills and/or hire purchase instalments);   
●  afford a meal with meat, chicken or fish or vegetarian equivalent every second day;
●  afford keeping their home appropriately warm;
●  have access to a car/van for personal use;
●  replace worn-out furniture.
 
Personal items:
●  replace worn-out clothes with some new ones; 
●  have two pairs of properly fitting shoes;
●  spend a small amount of money each week on him/herself (“pocket money”);
●  have regular leisure activities;
●  get together with friends/family for a drink/meal at least once a month;
●  have an internet connection. 
Persons lacking at least five items out of the 13 material and social deprivation items are considered to be materially and socially deprived.
Persons lacking at least seven items out of the 13 material and social deprivation items are considered to be severely materially and socially deprived.
 
6. Key:
: Data not published due to unreliable survey estimates as a result of:
1. less than 20 reporting households; or
2. the non-response for the item concerned exceeds 50 per cent.
[] Figures to be used with caution: figures with between 20 and 49 reporting households or with non-response for the item concerned that exceeds 20 per cent and is lower or equal to 50 per cent.
N/A  Not applicable
 
7. Other notes:
–  Sample used for the SILC survey was extracted from a database based on the Census of Population and Housing 2011.
–  Tables may not exactly add up due to rounding.
 
8. More information relating to this news release may be accessed at:
 

9. A detailed news release calendar is available online.

10. References to this news release are to be cited appropriately. For guidance on access and re-use of data please visit our dedicated webpage.

11. For further assistance send your request through our online request form.

EU-SILC 2022: Well-being, Social and Health Indicators
NR 055/2024
Release Date: 25 March 2024
Top view of medical stethoscope and icon family on cyan background. Health care insurance concept. 3d rendering
  • The majority of persons living in private households perceived their general health as being good (76.7 per cent), with 31 per cent of people stating that they suffer from a chronic illness or condition.
  • On a scale from 0 (not satisfied at all) to 10 (completely satisfied), an average score of 8.6 and 6.8 was reported by respondents regarding their personal relationships and time use and financial satisfaction, respectively.
  • Respondents who were at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion reported lower average scores regarding their overall life, financial situation, current job, and personal relationships satisfaction, and higher average scores regarding their time use satisfaction, when compared to their counterparts.
  • Feelings of happiness were reported most of the time (58 per cent), whilst feelings of nervousness and agitation were experienced sometimes (31 per cent), by respondents.
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