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New York City death rate reaches historic low
Date:1/9/2008

The death rate in New York City reached an all-time low in 2006, the Health Department reported today, as the number of deaths fell to 55,391 -- down from 57,068 in 2005 and 60,218 in 2001. Mortality declined in eight leading categories, including diabetes, HIV, chronic lung disease and kidney failure. The only leading killer that increased significantly was substance use (up 8%). Heart disease and cancer remained the city's biggest killers, claiming 21,844 lives and 13,116 lives, respectively. The figures come from the latest Annual Summary of Vital Statistics, the definitive registry of births and deaths in New York City.

The Annual Summary, available online at www.nyc.gov/html/doh/downloads/pdf/vs/2006sum.pdf, also provides new details on New Yorkers' life expectancy. Those figures, based on 2005 data, show that women's life expectancy rose by 2.5 months, reaching a record 81.3 years. Male life expectancy held steady at 75.7 years in 2005, while overall life expectancy increased from 78.6 years to 78.7 years.

"New Yorkers are living longer, healthier lives," said Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, New York City Heath Commissioner, "but too many New Yorkers are still dying from preventable causes. The leading causes of premature death can be prevented by quitting smoking, controlling blood pressure and cholesterol, reducing risky sex and using condoms to avoid HIV, and living free of alcohol and drug dependence. We are working with community groups and health providers to help all New Yorkers achieve better health."

Leading Causes of Death in New York City, 2006

The report reveals a steady decline in smoking-related deaths, which have fallen by 11% since 2002 (from 8,722 to 7,744 among adults 35 and older). Deaths from smoking-induced cardiovascular disease fell by 14% from 2002 to 2006. Fatal lung cancer fell by 8% during the same period, and deaths from chronic airway obstruction declined by 17%. Recent declines in NYC's smoki
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Contact: Jessica Scaperotti
jscapero@health.nyc.gov
212-788-5290
New York City Health Department
Source:Eurekalert

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