Navigation Links
U.S. Death Rate at All-Time Low: CDC

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- The death rate in the United States reached an all-time low in 2009, the 10th straight year of decline, dropping 2.3 percent from 2008, federal health officials report.

"There is basically good news," said lead author Kenneth Kochanek, a statistician at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics.

"Ten of the major causes of death decreased significantly," he said. "You have life expectancy going up, you have infant mortality going down," he added.

Kochanek cautioned that this is preliminary data, and the CDC has not looked at the reasons for these trends. The final data, which should be available this summer, may shed some light on the findings, he noted.

Behavioral changes, particularly the decline in smoking, are partly responsible for the improvements, one expert says.

The report shows a drop from 758.7 deaths per 100,000 people in 2008 to 741 per 100,000 people in 2009. In all, 2,436,682 deaths were reported in 2009.

Overall U.S. life expectancy rose slightly from 78 years to 78.2 years between 2008 and 2009. Men's life expectancy increased to 75.7 years and women's to 80.6 years, the researchers found.

However, life expectancy for blacks remained unchanged -- 70.9 years for men and 77.4 years for women. The disparity between whites and blacks is now 4.3 years, representing a 0.2 percent increase from 2008 to 2009, the report found.

"We are not really sure why life expectancy did not go up for blacks," Kochanek said. "That's one of those things we have to look at with the final data."

Deaths fell in 10 of the 15 leading causes of death. Heart disease dropped 3.7 percent, cancer fell 1.1 percent, and stroke declined 4.2 percent. Deaths from Alzheimer's disease, diabetes, chronic lower respiratory diseases and accidents all declined 4.1 percent. Deaths from flu and pneumonia fell 4.7 percent, and deaths from septicemia, a bacterial infection, decreased 1.8 percent.

Deaths from homicides fell 6.8 percent, but suicides increased from 35,933 in 2008 to 36,547 in 2009. Other than suicide, which overtook septicemia as the 10th leading cause of death, the ranking of the leading causes of death was unchanged from 2008 to 2009, the researchers noted.

Infant mortality hit a record low in 2009, falling from 6.59 deaths per 1,000 births in 2008 to 6.42, representing a 2.6 percent decrease, according to the report.

The leading causes of infant deaths are birth defects, preterm birth, low birth weight and sudden infant death syndrome, the researchers explained.

These data represent 96 percent of death certificates reported to the National Vital Statistics System from all states, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories.

Kochanek noted that the United States is still behind other countries in life expectancy, infant mortality and death rates.

"But we are getting better," he said.

Commenting on the report, Dr. Laurence Gardner, a professor of medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, said these trends most likely reflect the widespread decrease in smoking.

"And maybe the medical profession gets some credit here," he said. "I don't think we should beat our chests too strongly, but the evidence is beginning to hint at better management of chronic illness, which would explain why people are living longer with a confirmed diagnosis."

As for the disparity in life expectancy between blacks and whites, Gardner offered three possible explanations.

"There may be more violence, a real issue about disparity in access to health care and possible issues with the data," he said.

Compared with other countries, Gardner doesn't think the United States has made all that much progress.

"I don't think this puts the U.S. health care system at the top of the world any more than it was," Gardner said.

More information

For more about life expectancy, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

SOURCES: Kenneth Kochanek, statistician, Mortality Statistics Branch, Division of Vital Statistics, National Center for Health Statistics, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Laurence Gardner, M.D., professor of medicine, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine; March 16, 2011, CDC report, Deaths: Preliminary Data for 2009

Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Heavy drinking associated with increased risk of death from pancreatic cancer
2. Heavy Drinking Might Raise Risk of Death From Pancreatic Cancer
3. Colonoscopy linked to decrease in colorectal cancer deaths, but many more could have been prevented
4. Risk of Death May Linger for Trauma Survivors
5. Diabetes Ups Death Risk Overall, Study Shows
6. New report says large proportion of colorectal cancer deaths could be prevented
7. A grudge match between humanity and death -- who wins?
8. New study confirms body weight influences risk of death among Asians
9. Study suggests gender does not play a role in risk of death from heart attack
10. Competing risks analysis highlights new targets in preventing ESRD and death of diabetics
11. Death rate from tuberculosis in homeless alarmingly high: Study
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
U.S. Death Rate at All-Time Low: CDC 
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... ... Smiles by Stevens is pleased to announce the addition of ... patients are aware of the benefits of Botox® in the treatment of moderate facial ... discomfort, soreness, and pain as a result of Jaw Tension, TMJ (temporo-mandibular joint) disorder, ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... Beddit® has ... Beddit Classic sleep tracking systems. The new app features a more intuitive SleepScore™ that ... understand how well you slept. The SleepScore is created by a proprietary algorithm. Beddit ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... In an ongoing Clinical Study conducted ... in Chicago, IL, UV Angel is evaluating the efficacy of its product and its ... units (totaling 30 beds) from May 2014 through October 2015 at a 360-bed, acute-care, ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Today, Mothers Against Drunk Driving ... has dropped below 10,000 for the first time since 2011. In 2014, there were ... to data released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 32,675 people were ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... (PHA) announces the nation’s Periwinkle Pioneers, individuals and groups responsible for advancing care ... disease. The Periwinkle Pioneers, nominated by the public, will receive special recognition throughout ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)...  Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN ) today announced the ... the United States (U.S.) Food and ... to Humira ® (adalimumab). Amgen believes this submission ... FDA and represents Amgen,s first BLA submission using the ... M.D., executive vice president of Research and Development at ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Nov. 25, 2015  The American Academy of ... (ACOG), and the March of Dimes cheered today,s ... Our Infants Act of 2015 (S.799), which ... newborns born exposed to drugs, such as opioids, ... introduction, all three organizations have worked together leading ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 2015  Linden Care, LLC, a retail specialty pharmacy ... patients suffering from chronic pain, said today that it ... Order (TRO) enjoining Express Scripts from unilaterally terminating the ... --> --> The company said ... options. --> --> ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: