Mortality in the United States, 2015

December 8, 2016

Questions for Jiaquan Xu, Epidemiologist and Lead Author on “Mortality in the United States, 2015.”

Q: Is it true that death rates in the U.S. have been increasing over the past few years?

JX: Not exactly. The age-adjusted death rate for total US population increased 1.2% from 724.6 per 100,000 standard population in 2014 to 733.1 in 2015. This was the first significant increase since 1999. We have seen the decrease in mortality for most race/ethnic groups in most of years since 2006. Especially the rates decreased significantly for all male, all female, non-Hispanic white male, non-Hispanic white female, non-Hispanic black male, non-Hispanic black female, Hispanic male, and Hispanic female in 2014 from 2013.


Q: What are some of the reasons why the death rate increased between 2014 and 2015?

JX: We don’t know exactly what caused the increase in mortality in the United States from 2014 to 2015. The results have shown that the age-adjusted death rates increased for 8 (heart disease, chronic lower respiratory, unintentional injuries, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, kidney disease, and suicide) of the 10 leading causes of death. Only decrease in mortality among 10 leading causes of death in 2015 from 2014 was for cancer. Death rates increased significantly for 20 states and decreased for 1. The change for the rest of states were not significant.


Q: Do your findings for 2015 suggest we have reached a peak as far as increases in life expectancy goes?

JX: We don’t think we have reached a peak in life expectancy. Many people died of non-age-related causes because they have aged. Those deaths are preventable. For example, there are 146,571 deaths caused by accidents which accounted for 5.4% of total deaths in 2015. About 65% of deaths from these unintentional injuries were those aged under 65. Among accidental deaths, unintentional poisoning accounted for 32.4 % and motor vehicle traffic accidents accounted for 24.5%. We also don’t know if the increase in mortality in 2015 will continue in 2016. But preliminary data have shown that the mortality for most of the 10 leading causes of death in 2015 went down in second quarter from first quarter, 2016 (http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/vsrr/mortality-dashboard.htm#trends). But it is too early to say that the mortality in 2016 will go down or continue going up. We will see what happens when the 2016 final file is available.


Q: What accounts for the decline in life expectancy at birth in 2015 from 2014?

JX: For the total US population, life expectancy decreased 0.1 year from 78.9 years in 2014 to 78.8 in 2015, mainly because of increases in mortality from the 13 causes of death among the 15 leading causes of death, such as heart disease, chronic lower respiratory disease, unintentional injuries, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, kidney disease, suicide, septicemia, , chronic liver disease, hypertension, Parkinson’s disease, and pneumonitis due to solids and liquids. From 2014 to 2015, life expectancy decreased 0.1 year for females largely because of increases in mortality from 12 of 15 leading causes of death such as heart disease, chronic lower respiratory disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, unintentional injuries, influenza and pneumonia, septicemia, hypertension, chronic liver disease, Parkinson’s disease, suicide, and pneumonitis due solids and liquids. The deaths from those 12 leading causes of death accounted for 52.9% of total female deaths.

Life expectancy declined 0.2 year for males largely because of increases in mortality from 11 of 15 leading causes of death such as unintentional injuries, chronic lower respiratory disease, stroke, diabetes, suicide, Alzheimer’s disease, chronic liver disease, septicemia, Parkinson’s disease, Homicide, and hypertension. And about 65% of accidental deaths were under 65 years old, while 81% of suicides were aged 15-64, and 95% of homicides were under 65 years. More young people dying from preventable causes drags life expectancy down.


Q: Is it unusual that mortality rates for so many leading causes of death increased in 2015?

JX: We haven’t seen the increase in mortality from so many leading causes of death for a long time. The age-adjusted death rates increased significantly for 3 of 10 leading causes of death in 2014, 2 in 2013, 1 in 2012, and 5 in 2011. It is an unusual year. Again we don’t know why.


Q: Does the increase in mortality among white females suggest another drop in life expectancy for that group?

JX: We don’t have life expectancy numbers for white females yet. It is possible that the life expectancy numbers in 2015 for white women will drop again in 2015 since the life expectancy decreased 0.1 year for all females in 2015 from 2014 and mortality from 12 of 15 leading causes of death for white females increased significantly in 2015 from 2014 (heart disease, chronic lower respiratory diseases, Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, unintentional injuries, diabetes, influenza and pneumonia, hypertension, chronic liver disease, Parkinson’s disease, suicide, pneumonitis due to solids and liquids).

 


Vaccination Coverage Among Adults With Diagnosed Diabetes: United States, 2015

December 6, 2016
Maria A. Villarroel, Ph.D., Health Statistician

Maria A. Villarroel, Ph.D., Health Statistician

Questions for Maria A. Villarroel, Ph.D., Health Statistician and Lead Author on “Vaccination Coverage Among Adults With Diagnosed Diabetes: United States, 2015.”

Q: Why did you decide to look at vaccination coverage with diagnosed diabetes?

MV: Persons with diabetes are at an increased risk for complications from vaccine-preventable infections, and a number of these of vaccines are recommended for adults living with diabetes. We wanted to examine the vaccine coverage among different segments of adults with diagnosed diabetes. This report describes the receipt of select vaccinations among adults with diagnosed diabetes by sex, age, race and ethnicity, and poverty status.


Q: Overall, which vaccinations were more prevalent for adults with diagnosed diabetes?

MV: We examined vaccination coverage for influenza, pneumococcal, hepatitis B and shingles among adults with diagnosed diabetes. Among adults aged 18 and over with diagnosed diabetes, influenza vaccination (61.6%) was more prevalent than pneumococcal (52.6%) and hepatitis B (17.1%) vaccination. The shingles vaccine is indicated for those aged 60 and older and we found that fewer than 3 in 10 (27.2%) adults aged 60 and over with diagnosed diabetes had been vaccinated for shingles.


Q: How did the vaccination rates for adults with diagnosed diabetes vary by age?

MV: We compared vaccination coverage for influenza, pneumococcal and hepatitis B among adults diagnosed with diabetes who were aged 18-44, 45-59, 60-74 and 75 and over. Vaccination coverage was not the same across age groups. Vaccination for influenza and pneumococcal disease increased with age. In contrast, vaccination for Hepatitis B decreased with age. We also examined vaccination coverage for shingles among adults aged 60 and over, and those who were aged 75 and over were likely to have been vaccinated than those aged 60-74.


Q: How did the vaccination rates for adults with diagnosed diabetes vary by race and ethnicity?

MV: We compared vaccination coverage among adults with diagnosed diabetes who were Hispanic, Non-Hispanic white, non-Hispanic black and Non-Hispanic Asian. Non-Hispanic white adults were more likely than non-Hispanic black and Hispanic adults to have been vaccinated for influenza in the past year and to have ever been vaccinated for pneumococcal disease and shingles at some point in the past. Non-Hispanic Asian adults were more likely than non-Hispanic black and Hispanic adults to have been vaccinated for influenza, but these groups did not differ from one another on pneumococcal and shingles vaccination.


Q: Were there any findings that surprised you?

MV: It was surprising to see the difference in the vaccination coverage for vaccines that are recommended for all adults with diabetes. In addition to differences by age and race and ethnicity, we observed wide differences in vaccination coverage by income status. Adults with diagnosed diabetes who were not living in poverty were consistently the most likely group to have been vaccinated for influenza, pneumococcal disease, hepatitis B, and shingles. From other reports, diagnosed diabetes is more common among poor and near poor adults, yet this report showed that these group are the least likely to get vaccinated.


QuickStats: Percentage of Adults Who Cannot or Find It Very Difficult to Stand or Be on Their Feet for About 2 Hours Without Using Special Equipment

December 2, 2016

A reported 10.2% of adults aged 18 years or older cannot, or find it very difficult to, stand or be on their feet for about 2 hours without using special equipment.

The percentage of adults who reported this difficulty increased with age: 2.9% of those aged 18–44 years, 11.8% of those aged 45–64 years, 19.1% of those 65–74 years, and 33.2% of those aged 75 years or older.

Overall, women were more likely (11.9%) than men (8.3%) to report this difficulty, and higher percentages were noted for women within each age group.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/65/wr/mm6547a6.htm


Problems Paying Medical Bills Among Persons Under Age 65: Early Release of Estimates From the National Health Interview Survey, 2011-June 2016

November 30, 2016

Questions for Robin Cohen, Ph.D., Health Statistician and Lead Author on “Problems Paying Medical Bills Among Persons Under Age 65: Early Release of Estimates From the National Health Interview Survey, 2011-June 2016

Q: What do you think is the most significant finding in your new study?

RC: I think the key finding in this report is that between 2015 and the first 6 months of 2016, there was little change in the percentage of persons under age 65 who were in families having problems paying medical bills.


Q: How have trends for families having problems paying medical bills in the United States changed in 2016 since you began examining this issue?

RC: We’ve noticed a continuing drop in those experiencing difficulties making their medical bill payments. The number of persons under age 65 who were in families having problems paying medical bills has decreased from 56.5 million in 2011 to 43.8 million in the first 6 months of 2016.


Q: Is paying for health insurance premiums considered a medical bill in your study?

RC: Premiums are not considered a medical bill in our study. Medical bills include bills for doctors, dentists, hospitals, therapists, medication, equipment, nursing home, or home care.


Q: What are the trends among race and ethnicity groups who are having problems paying medical bills this year and compared over time?

RC: We’ve observed a number of trends among different groups over time. All race and ethnicity groups studied in the report saw decreases in the percentage of persons under age 65 who were in families having problems paying medical bills between 2011 and the first 6 months of 2016. Within each year from 2011 through 2016, non-Hispanic Asian persons were the least likely to be in families having problems paying medical bills.


Q: What is the take-home message of your report?

RC: I think the take-home message from this research is the story the data offers about American families–that among persons under age 65, one in six persons is in a family having problems paying medical bills.


QuickStats: Percentage of Adults Aged 20 Years or Older Who Ever Told A Doctor That They Had Trouble Sleeping, by Age Group and Sex

November 29, 2016

In 2013–2014, 28% of U.S. adults reported that they had told a doctor or other health professional that they had trouble sleeping.

A smaller percentage of adults aged 20–39 years (19.2%) reported having trouble sleeping compared with persons aged 40–59 years (32.8%) and 60 years or older (33.2%).

This pattern by age group was observed for both men and women, although larger percentages of women aged 40–59 years and ≥60 years reported trouble sleeping compared with men in those age groups.


Provisional Estimates of Birth Data for 2014 through the Second Quarter of 2016

November 22, 2016

NCHS has released provisional estimates of selected reproductive indicators from birth data for 2014 through the second quarter of 2016. Estimates for 2014 and 2015 are based on final data.

The estimates for the first and second quarter of 2016 are based on all birth records received and processed by NCHS as of August 28, 2016.

Estimates are presented for: general fertility rates, age-specific birth rates, total and low risk cesarean delivery rates, preterm birth rates and other gestational age categories. These indicators were selected based on their importance for public health surveillance as well as the feasibility of producing reliable estimates using available provisional data. Future quarterly releases will include additional birth indicators from natality data.

Quarterly estimates are compared with estimates for the same quarter of the preceding year; for example, the second quarter of 2016 is compared with the second quarter of 2015. For comparability with rates for 12-month periods, the quarterly (3-month) rates have been annualized to present births per year per 1,000 population that would be expected if the quarter-specific rate prevailed for 12 months.

In addition, the rates and percentages for a 12-month period ending with each quarter (i.e., 12-month moving average) are presented to account for seasonality. Estimates for the 12-month period ending with the fourth quarter in each year can be interpreted as an annual provisional estimate for that year.

natality_infographic

 

 


QuickStats: Average Infant Mortality Rate by Month — National Vital Statistics System, United States, 2010–2014

November 21, 2016

During 2010–2014, the infant mortality rate averaged approximately 6.00 infant deaths per 1,000 live births each month.

The infant mortality rate peaked in February and April at approximately 6.30 and was lowest from July to September with approximately 5.71 infant deaths per 1,000 live births.

Source: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/65/wr/mm6545a11.htm