Report: Death Rates Increase for 5 of the 12 Leading Causes of Mortality


Health, United States, 2017 includes an in-depth special feature that discusses mortality in America.

Suicides, chronic liver disease, septicemia, Alzheimer's disease, and unintentional injuries, which are 5 of the 12 leading causes of death, have all increased since 2000, acoriding to a new report from the Secretary of Health and Human Services to the President and Congress.

Health, United States, 2017 includes an in-depth special feature that discusses mortality in America. It examines when, why, and where individuals are dying in the United States. Causes of death and mortality’s impact on changes in life expectancy at birth are key focuses of the special feature. Data on life expectancy at birth are presented by sex, followed by data on death rates by age group.

Report authors noted that between 2006 and 2016, the age-adjusted suicide death rate increased 23%, from 11.0 to 13.5 deaths per 100,000 resident population.

Among men ages 25—34, death rates for chronic liver disease and cirrhosis increased by an average of 7.9 percent per year during 2006–2016. Among women in the same age group, this increase averaged 11.4% per year.

The report also noted that the age-adjusted death rate for drug overdose in the US increased 72% between 2006 and 2016 to 19.8 deaths per 100,000 population in 2016,

and that life expectancy at birth decreased for the first time since 1993 by 0.2 years between 2014 and 2015, and then decreased another 0.1 years between 2015 and 2016.

In addition to the focus on mortality, the Health, United States, 2017 Chartbook examines 10-year trends in a broad range of health measures, including:

  • Between 2006 and 2016, the birth rate among teenagers ages 15—19 fell by half, from 41.1 to 20.3 live births per 1,000 females, which was a record low for the United States.
  • The percentage of high school students who smoked cigarettes in the past 30 days decreased from 15.8 percent in 2011 to 8.0 percent in 2016. High school students’ use of electronic cigarettes increased more than seven-fold, from 1.5% to 11.3%.
  • In 2016, personal health care expenditures in the U.S. totaled $2.8 trillion—a 4.4 percentage increase from 2015.

More information on these and over 100 additional health indicators can be found in the full report at


Death Rates Up for 5 of the 12 Leading Causes of Death [news release]. Atlanta. CDC website. Accessed September 21, 2018.

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