Why Is The Death Rate Among Middle-Aged White Americans On The Rise?

Posted: Feb 1 2016, 9:17am CST | by , Updated: Feb 1 2016, 8:58pm CST, in News | Latest Science News


Why Death Rate Among Middle-Aged White Americans is on the Rise?
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A study found many reasons behind this trend including failures in the medical system and economy.

An unexpected rise has been observed in the mortality rate among middle-aged white Americans in recent years. 

Last year, a study has revealed that middle-aged white Americans are getting sicker and dying in greater numbers compared to the same age group of people living in the rest of the world.

Now, new research has manage to found the root cause of this increasing death rate and it’s not a single one, in fact, an array of factors contributed to this trend.

Initially, it was thought that drug overdoses and suicides are the main drivers behind increasing deaths of older white Americans but latest research suggests that both are only a small part of the whole scenario. The main problem lies in stagnant health care system which is struggling to deal with heart disease, diabetes and other common illnesses among white adults aged 45 to 54.

“We are accustomed to making progress against diseases. We learn how to prevent them and how to treat them, as we do that, fewer people die from them,” said Dr. David Bluemental, co-author of the study and President of The Commonwealth Fund.

“For middle-aged whites, that progress has stalled and even reversed for some conditions. We need to find out why this is happening.”

A study has found that the highest mortality rate among white middle-age people seen in seven states including Kentucky, Mississippi, Alabama and West Virginia where death rate was up to 76% higher than expected. The worst trend was observed in West Virginia were people between the ages of 45 and 54 are dying at highest rates since 1980.

Heart attack is the second leading cause of death in white middle aged people in United States. The situation was not the same few decades ago when there was a 41% decline in mortality linked to heart disease from 1983 to 1998. But since 1999, the rate has not decreased much, in fact, it’s going up ever since.

“Mortality rates for middle-aged whites have stopped declining – or actually increased – across a broad range of health conditions, including most of the leading causes of death.” Study reads. 

Researchers also suggest that poverty also contributed in increasing the death rate. “The excess deaths among middle-aged whites could be due in large part to the erosion in their socioeconomic standing. On a range of social and economic indicators, middle-aged whites have been falling behind the 21st century.”

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The Author

Hira Bashir covers daily affairs around the world.




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