Drug overdoses and suicides in the last year pushed up the deaths in the US and continues to decline the live expectancy of Americans. In 2017 there were over 2.8 million deaths in the USA, which showed an increase compared to the previous year of 70,000. It was the highest number of deaths in a single year since the government started monitoring it over a century ago, according to the Centre of Disease Control and Prevention.
Statistics Are A Wake-Up Call
The huge increase is partly a reflection of the country’s growth as well as ageing population, although the deaths in the younger age group and particularly in people of middle age had the most impact on the life expectancy calculations. To say the least, the sobering statistics are a shocking wake-up call that America is losing too many, too often and too early to conditions that could be prevented, according to a statement by the CDC’s director, Dr Robert Redfield.
According to the USA government records, in the last year, the suicide death rate has been the highest it has ever been in the last 50 years, while the suicides were below 45,000 in the previous year, it went up to over 47,000 last year.
Declining USA Life Expectancy
For several decades no the life expectancy of Americans was on an upswing, continuously rising a few months year after year. This all changed when things went the other way, the decline started in 2015, in 2016 it remained level and in 2017 it declined further. The nation now finds itself in the longest life expectancy declining period since the 1910s, when life expectancy was hugely influenced by the worst flu pandemic as well as World War I, which combined killed almost a million Americans, in 1918 the life expectancy was 39.
Robert Anderson, who oversees the CDC death statistics, says he has never experienced anything like it. The only rate that death rate that declined in 2017 was that caused by cancer amongst the ten leading causes of death, while at the same time seven other increased, which includes diabetes, suicides, Alzheimer’s flu/pneumonia, stroke, unintentional injuries and chronic lower respiratory diseases. The number one killer in the nation in heart disease, which has also stopped falling.
What Causes & Drives Increase
While the CDC officials are not speculating what is behind the decline in life expectancy, George Washington University’s disease prevention expert, William Dietz, feels it is a sense of hopelessness. It is the widening income gap, financial struggles and divisive politics that makes people feel hopeless, this leads to drug use and ends in suicide. In the deadliest drug overdose to hit the USA, the continued increase in drug overdose deaths that surpassed 70,000 in 2017, the US is experiencing an overdose epidemic which increases the death rate by 10%