Deprivation in Grampian: from SIMD 2012 to SIMD2016


The publication of the new version of the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD) on 31st August 2016 signifies a marked reduction of estimates of deprivation levels in the NHS Grampian area. The new system (which we will refer to as SIMD2016) revises the definitions of the scores that it uses to define deprivation, and at the same time revises the geographical units (datazones) which are the basis of the assessment to take account of population changes.

Assessment of change


Grampian has experienced a considerable increase in population over the last decade, and the number of datazones has been increased by 10% (from 684 to 749). Despite this increase, the number of deprived datazones in the 20% most deprived zones nationally (Q1, the deprived quintile) has actually decreased from 42 under SIMD2012 to 29 under SIMD2016, a one third reduction. In Aberdeen City the number of deprived datazones has decreased from 35 to 22, despite the number of zones in the city increasing from 267 to 283. Aberdeenshire has increased from 5 deprived datazones to 6, while Moray has seen a decrease from 2 deprived datazones to 1. The greatest change has therefore been in Aberdeen City. It is worth noting, however, that the introduction of the new datazones does not appear to have radically altered the situation, as most of the old deprived datazones become substantially unchanged new datazones.

The overall SIMD2016 score is built up from a series of scores based on deprivation measures in seven “Domains”:

Income Domain               Education Domain               Crime Domain

Employment Domain      Housing Domain

Health Domain                 Access Domain

The composition of these domains has changed over time, and, for example, the Health Domain changes have resulted in a marked reduction in the Grampian
datazones in the deprived Health quintile, from 9.6% under SIMD2012 to 4.5% under SIMD2016. In Aberdeen City this has fallen from 23.2% to 11.7%. This appears to be mainly due to the reduced weighting given to emergency admission rates to acute hospitals in Grampian.

Grampian population changes

In terms of population the following table shows the breakdown for Grampian for the old SIMD2012 deprivation system in comparison to SIMD2016:

Grampian Population changes

As can be seen, the affluent quintiles greatly exceed the nominal 20% quota, while the deprived quintiles fall well short of 20%.

 Related maps

To view maps of the new datazones and their deprivation quintiles, click on one of the following links:

Additional maps of the quintiles of each of the Domains which make up the overall SIMD2016 scores (income, employment, health, education, housing, access and crime) are available at the following links:                                                                                                                                    

New Localities in Grampian Council Areas

The layout of the new localities within each council area is shown in the following maps:

SIMD2016 quintile maps have also been prepared for the following Localities in NHS Grampian:

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