Children’s Mortality Rate Highest in Decades

( — The mortality rate of young people in the United States is the highest it has been for decades. Researchers have found that the rate of death for children aged 1 to 19 rose by more than 10% between 2019 and 2020, and by 8% from 2020 to 2021. The study was conducted by academics from the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, the University of Washington’s pediatrics and epidemiology department, and the Seattle Children’s Research Institute.

The report states that life expectancy increases stopped in the US in 2010 as mortality rates in people aged 25 to 64 increased but rates for older and younger people decreased. While the global pandemic of 2020 led to a rise in death for people over 65, it also increased the death rate of the very young, which the reports says was unexpected.

The increases in mortality in the young had come at the end of a period where it had been decreasing. The study found, “Although most of the upsurge in pediatric mortality was attributable to deaths among older children (ages 10-19), all-cause mortality in younger children (ages 1-9) also increased in 2021 (by 8.4%). Infants (<1 year) were the only age group that experienced no significant increase in mortality.”

The causes of the deaths of young people are widely varied. Suicide among individuals aged between 10 and 19 began to rise in 2007, while homicides in the same age group also increased. Death from injury accounts for 2.80 deaths per 100,000. The study also said there is a “deepening mental health crisis” among young people and drug overdoses have also risen. The lethal drug Fentanyl was specifically mentioned. This synthetic opioid is thought to be the leading cause of death in Americans aged 18 – 45. It also accounts for more than 70% of drug deaths and its use is growing at a rapid pace. According to the CDC, 56,000 died from Fentanyl use in 2020, but this had risen to over 70,000 by 2021.

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