New statistics released by the CDC show that for the first time in over a decade, the U.S. death rate has risen. Death rates measure the number of deaths for every 100,000 people. This new piece of data notes a rise in deaths during 2015 when compared to the previous year. In 2014 723.3 people died per 100,000, whereas in 2015 that rose to 729.5 deaths.
“It’s an uptick in mortality and that doesn’t usually happen, so it’s significant,” Robert Anderson, the chief of mortality statistics at the National Center for Health Statistics told The New York Times. “But the question is, what does it mean? We really need more data to know. If we start looking at 2016 and we see another rise, we’ll be a lot more concerned.”
In more recent years, death rates have been on the decline due to developing technologies and better health care. Experts at the CDC say there’s no reason to panic over this new development, however it’s set a few alarm bells ringing.
“We are not accustomed to seeing death rates increase on a national scale,” said Andrew Fenelon, a researcher at the CDC. “We’ve seen increases in mortality for some groups, but it is quite rare to see it for the whole population. Many countries in Europe are witnessing declines in mortality, so the gap between the U.S. and other countries is growing.”
The amount of people dying from Alzheimer’s, drug overdoses and suicide is the cause for this rise. Meanwhile the mortality rate for heart disease has also increased slightly from 166.7 in 2014 to 167.1 in 2015. While that’s only a small rise, Dr. Anderson adds that this is the first time since 1993 that the death rate for heart disease did not decline.
Leave a Reply