Towards a Diversification of Causes of Deaths

Marie-Pier Bergeron-Boucher , Interdisciplinary Center on Population Dynamics (CPop), University of Southern Denmark

Lifespan inequalities have been decreasing since the 17th century in industrialized societies, as individuals became more homogeneous in their age at death. But are individuals also becoming more homogeneous in their cause of death? In this paper, the diversity of causes of death is studied using entropy measures. It is shown that, due to the major reductions in deaths from cardiovascular diseases, the share of a range of other causes of deaths, such as infectious diseases, mental and behavioral disorders and diseases of the nervous system, have been increasing in the last two decades in 16 low mortality countries. This redistribution of cardiovascular deaths towards many other causes is leading to a diversification of causes of death.

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 Presented in Session 5. Health & Mortality 1