Scottish Health and Ethnicity Linkage Study

Which health issues are looked at?

Many areas have been considered including cardiovascular disease, cancer, mental health, maternal and child health, respiratory disease, infectious and parasitic diseases and uptake of breast and bowel cancer screening.

The 1999 White Paper "Towards a Healthier Scotland" identified Scotland's priority health areas as cardiovascular disease; cancer, mental health and maternal and child health. Therefore, SHELS 1 and 2 focused on these areas.

SHELS 3 looked at the following:

  • respiratory diseases (e.g. asthma)
  • gastrointestinal diseases (e.g. appendicitis, alcoholic related diseases)
  • a sample of data from General Practices to obtain information about risk factors for heart disease (e.g. smoking)

SHELS 4 is now focussing on:

  • all deaths across Scotland (2001 to 2013)
  • all hospital admissions (including how long we stay in hospital and information about re-admissions)
  • infectious and parasitic diseases (including HIV and hepatitis C and B)
  • accidents and poisonings
  • uptake of bowel cancer screening