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Mortality rate, or death rate, is a measure of the number of
death Death is the permanent, irreversible cessation of all biological functions that sustain a living Living or The Living may refer to: Common meanings *Life, a condition that distinguishes organisms from inorganic objects and dead organi ...

death
s (in general, or due to a specific cause) in a particular
population Population typically refers the number of people in a single area whether it be a city or town, region, country, or the world. Governments typically quantify the size of the resident population within their jurisdiction by a process called a ...
, scaled to the size of that population, per unit of time. Mortality rate is typically expressed in units of deaths per 1,000 individuals per year; thus, a mortality rate of 9.5 (out of 1,000) in a population of 1,000 would mean 9.5 deaths per year in that entire population, or 0.95% out of the total. It is distinct from "
morbidity A disease is a particular abnormal condition that negatively affects the structure or function (biology), function of all or part of an organism, and that is not due to any immediate external injury. Diseases are often known to be medical ...
", which is either the
prevalence In epidemiology Epidemiology is the study and analysis of the distribution (who, when, and where), patterns and risk factor, determinants of health and disease conditions in defined populations. It is a cornerstone of public health, and shapes p ...

prevalence
or incidence of a
disease A disease is a particular abnormal condition that negatively affects the structure A structure is an arrangement and organization of interrelated elements in a material object or system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting ...
, and also from the
incidence rate In epidemiology Epidemiology is the study and analysis of the distribution (who, when, and where), patterns and determinants In mathematics, the determinant is a Scalar (mathematics), scalar value that is a function (mathematics), function ...
(the number of newly appearing cases of the disease per unit of time). An important specific mortality rate measure is the crude death rate, which looks at mortality from all causes in a given time interval for a given population. , for instance, the
CIA The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA; ), known informally as "The Agency" and "The Company", is a civilian foreign intelligence service of the federal government of the United States The federal government of the United States (U.S. ...
estimates that the crude death rate globally will be 7.7 deaths per 1,000 people in a population per year. In a generic form, mortality rates can be seen as calculated using (d/p) \cdot 10^n, where ''d'' represents the deaths from whatever cause of interest is specified that occur within a given time period, ''p'' represents the size of the population in which the deaths occur (however this population is defined or limited), and 10^nis the conversion factor from the resulting fraction to another unit (e.g., multiplying by 10^3to get mortality rate per 1,000 individuals).


Crude death rate, globally

The crude death rate is defined as "the mortality rate from all causes of death for a population," calculated as the " tal number of deaths during a given time interval" divided by the " d-interval population", per 1,000 or 100,000; for instance, the population of the
U.S. The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country primarily located in North America North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all ...

U.S.
was around 290,810,000 in 2003, and in that year, approximately 2,419,900 deaths occurred in total, giving a crude death (mortality) rate of 832 deaths per 100,000. , the
CIA The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA; ), known informally as "The Agency" and "The Company", is a civilian foreign intelligence service of the federal government of the United States The federal government of the United States (U.S. ...
estimates the U.S. crude death rate will be 8.3 per 1,000, while it estimates that the global rate will be 7.7 per 1,000. According to the
World Health Organization The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations United Nations Specialized Agencies are autonomous organizations working with the United Nations and each other through the co-ordinating machinery of the Unit ...
, the ten leading causes of death, globally, in 2016, for both sexes and all ages, were as presented in the table below. Crude death rate, per 100,000 population #
Ischaemic heart disease Coronary artery disease (CAD), also called coronary heart disease (CHD), ischemic heart disease (IHD), or simply heart disease, involves the reduction of blood flow to the heart muscle due to build-up of plaque (atherosclerosis Atheroscleros ...
, 126 #
Stroke A stroke is a medical condition A disease is a particular abnormal condition that negatively affects the structure or function (biology), function of all or part of an organism, and that is not due to any immediate external injury. Dis ...

Stroke
, 77 #
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a type of progressive lung disease The lungs are the primary Organ (anatomy), organs of the respiratory system in humans and many other animals including a few fish and some snails. In mammal ...
, 41 #
Lower respiratory infections Lower may refer to: * Lower (surname) * Lower Township, New Jersey *Lower Receiver (firearms) * Lower Wick Gloucestershire, England See also * Nizhny {{Disambiguation ...
, 40 #
Alzheimer's disease Alzheimer's disease (AD), also referred to simply as Alzheimer's, is a that usually starts slowly and progressively worsens. It is the cause of 60–70% of cases of . The most common early symptom is difficulty in . As the disease advance ...
and other
dementias Dementia occurs as a set of related symptoms when the brain is damaged by injury or disease. The symptoms involve progressive impairments to memory, thinking, and behavior, that affect the ability to look after oneself as a measure of carryi ...
, 27 # , 23 #
Diabetes mellitus Diabetes mellitus, commonly known as just diabetes, is a group of metabolic disorder A metabolic disorder is a disorder that negatively alters the body's processing and distribution of macronutrients such as proteins, fats, and carbohydrates ...
, 21 # Road injury, 19 #
Diarrhoeal diseases Diarrhea, also spelled diarrhoea, is the condition of having at least three loose, liquid, or watery bowel movements each day. It often lasts for a few days and can result in dehydration In physiology, dehydration is a lack of total body ...
, 19 #
Tuberculosis Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease An infection is the invasion of an organism's body Tissue (biology), tissues by Pathogen, disease-causing agents, their multiplication, and the reaction of host (biology), host tissues to the in ...

Tuberculosis
, 17 Mortality rate is also measured per thousand. It is determined by how many people of a certain age die per thousand people. Decrease of mortality rate is one of the reasons for increase of population. Development of medical science and other technologies has resulted in the decrease of mortality rate in all the countries of the world for some decades. In 1990, the mortality rate of children under 5 years of age was 144 per thousand, but in 2015 the child mortality rate was 38 per thousand.


Related measures of mortality

Other specific measures of mortality include:For tabulated definitions for Crude death rate, Cause-specific death rate, Proportionate mortality, Death-to-case ratio, Neonatal mortality rate, Postneonatal mortality rate, Infant mortality rate, and Maternal mortality rate (with example calculations for several), see For any of these, a "sex-specific mortality rate" refers to "a mortality rate among either males or females", where the calculation involves both "numerator and denominator... limited to the one sex".


Use in epidemiology

In most cases there are few if any ways to obtain exact mortality rates, so epidemiologists use estimation to predict correct mortality rates. Mortality rates are usually difficult to predict due to language barriers, health infrastructure related issues, conflict, and other reasons. Maternal mortality has additional challenges, especially as they pertain to
stillbirths Stillbirth is typically defined as fetal A fetus or foetus (; plural fetuses, feti, foetuses, or foeti) is the unborn offspring of an animal that develops from an embryo An embryo is the early stage of development of a multicellular or ...
, abortions, and multiple births. In some countries, during the 1920s, a stillbirth was defined as "a birth of at least twenty weeks' gestation in which the child shows no evidence of life after complete birth". In most countries, however, a stillbirth was defined as "the birth of a fetus, after 28 weeks of pregnancy, in which pulmonary respiration does not occur".


Census data and vital statistics

Ideally, all mortality estimation would be done using vital statistics and census data. Census data will give detailed information about the population at risk of death. The vital statistics provide information about live births and deaths in the population. Often, either census data and vital statistics data is not available. This is common in developing countries, countries that are in conflict, areas where natural disasters have caused mass displacement, and other areas where there is a humanitarian crisis


Household surveys

Household surveys or interviews are another way in which mortality rates are often assessed. There are several methods to estimate mortality in different segments of the population. One such example is the sisterhood method, which involves researchers estimating maternal mortality by contacting women in populations of interest and asking whether or not they have a sister, if the sister is of child-bearing age (usually 15) and conducting an interview or written questions about possible deaths among sisters. The sisterhood method, however, does not work in cases where sisters may have died before the sister being interviewed was born. Orphanhood surveys estimate mortality by questioning children are asked about the mortality of their parents. It has often been criticized as an adult mortality rate that is very biased for several reasons. The adoption effect is one such instance in which orphans often do not realize that they are adopted. Additionally, interviewers may not realize that an adoptive or foster parent is not the child's biological parent. There is also the issue of parents being reported on by multiple children while some adults have no children, thus are not counted in mortality estimates. Widowhood surveys estimate adult mortality by responding to questions about the deceased husband or wife. One limitation of the widowhood survey surrounds the issues of divorce, where people may be more likely to report that they are widowed in places where there is the great social stigma around being a divorcee. Another limitation is that multiple marriages introduce biased estimates, so individuals are often asked about first marriage. Biases will be significant if the association of death between spouses, such as those in countries with large AIDS epidemics.


Sampling

Sampling refers to the selection of a subset of the population of interest to efficiently gain information about the entire population. Samples should be representative of the population of interest.
Cluster sampling In statistics Statistics is the discipline that concerns the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation, and presentation of data. In applying statistics to a scientific, industrial, or social problem, it is conventional to begin with ...

Cluster sampling
is an approach to non-probability sampling; this is an approach in which each member of the population is assigned to a group (cluster), and then clusters are randomly selected, and all members of selected clusters are included in the sample. Often combined with stratification techniques (in which case it is called
multistage sampling In statistics Statistics is the discipline that concerns the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation, and presentation of data. In applying statistics to a scientific, industrial, or social problem, it is conventional to begin with ...
), cluster sampling is the approach most often used by epidemiologists. In areas of forced migration, there is more significant
sampling errorIn statistics Statistics is the discipline that concerns the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation, and presentation of data. In applying statistics to a scientific, industrial, or social problem, it is conventional to begin with a ...
. Thus cluster sampling is not the ideal choice.


Mortality statistics

Causes of death vary greatly between developed and less
developed countries A developed country (or industrialized country, high-income country, more economically developed country (MEDC), advanced country) is a sovereign state A sovereign state is a political entity that is represented by one centralized governmen ...
; see also
list of causes of death by rate The following is a list of the causes of human deaths worldwide for different years arranged by their associated mortality rates. In 2002, there were about 57 million deaths. In 2005, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) using the I ...
for worldwide statistics.
According to
Jean Ziegler Jean Ziegler (; born April 19, 1934 as Hans Ziegler) is a former professor of sociology Sociology is the study of society, human social behaviour, patterns of social relationships, social interaction, and culture that surrounds everyday lif ...

Jean Ziegler
(the
United Nations Special Rapporteur Special rapporteur, independent expert, and working group member are titles given to individuals working on behalf of the United Nations (UN) within the scope of "special procedure" mechanisms who have a specific country or thematic mandate fro ...
on the Right to Food for 2000 to March 2008), mortality due to
malnutrition Malnutrition is 'a state of nutrition in which a deficiency or excess (or imbalance) of energy, protein and other nutrients causes measurable adverse effect on tissue and body form (body shape, size and composition) and function and clinical ou ...
accounted for 58% of the total mortality in 2006: "In the world, approximately 62 million people, all causes of death combined, die each year. In 2006, more than 36 million died of hunger or diseases due to deficiencies in
micronutrients Micronutrients are nutrient, essential dietary elements required by organisms in varying quantities throughout life to orchestrate a range of physiological functions to maintain health. Micronutrient requirements differ between organisms; for examp ...
".
Jean Ziegler Jean Ziegler (; born April 19, 1934 as Hans Ziegler) is a former professor of sociology Sociology is the study of society, human social behaviour, patterns of social relationships, social interaction, and culture that surrounds everyday lif ...

Jean Ziegler
, ''L'Empire de la honte'', Fayard, 2007 , p.130.
Of the roughly 150,000 people who die each day across the globe, about two thirds—100,000 per day—die of age-related causes. In industrialized nations, the proportion is much higher, reaching 90%.


Economics

Scholars have stated that there is a significant relationship between a low standard of living that results from low income; and increased mortality rates. A low standard of living is more likely to result in malnutrition, which can make people more susceptible to disease and more likely to die from these diseases. A lower standard of living may lead to as a lack of hygiene and sanitation, increased exposure to and the spread of disease, and a lack of access to proper medical care and facilities. Poor health can in turn contribute to low and reduced incomes, which can create a loop known as the health-poverty trap. Indian economist and philosopher
Amartya Sen Amartya Kumar Sen (; born 3 November 1933) is an Indian economist and philosopher, who since 1972 has taught and worked in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom ( ...

Amartya Sen
has stated that mortality rates can serve as an indicator of economic success and failure. Historically, mortality rates have been adversely affected by short term price increases. Studies have shown that mortality rates increase at a rate concurrent with increases in
food prices Food prices refer to the average price level for food across countries, regions and on a global scale. Food prices have an impact on producers and consumers of food. Price levels depend on the Food industry, food production process, including f ...
. These effects have a greater impact on vulnerable, lower-income populations than they do on populations with a higher standard of living. In more recent times, higher mortality rates have been less tied to socio-economic levels within a given society, but have differed more between low and high-income countries. It is now found that national income, which is directly tied to standard of living within a country, is the largest factor in mortality rates being higher in low-income countries.


Preventable mortality

These rates are especially pronounced for children under 5 years old, particularly in lower-income, developing countries. These children have a much greater chance of dying of diseases that have become very preventable in higher-income parts of the world. More children die of malaria, respiratory infections, diarrhea, perinatal conditions, and measles in developing nations. Data shows that after the age of 5 these preventable causes level out between high and low-income countries.


See also

* Biodemography * Compensation law of mortality *
Demography Demography (from prefix ''demo-'' from Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the used in and the from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into the following periods: (), Dark Ages (), the period ...

Demography
*
Gompertz–Makeham law of mortality The Gompertz–Makeham law states that the human death rate is the sum of an age-dependent component (the Gompertz function The Gompertz curve or Gompertz function is a type of mathematical model A mathematical model is a description of a syst ...
*
List of causes of death by rate The following is a list of the causes of human deaths worldwide for different years arranged by their associated mortality rates. In 2002, there were about 57 million deaths. In 2005, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) using the I ...
*
List of countries by birth rate This article includes three versions of the list of countries by crude birth rate. Methodology Crude birth rate refers to the number of births over a given period divided by the person-years lived by the population over that period. It is exp ...
*
List of countries by death rate Image:Death rate world map CIA 2009.PNG, 550px, The death rate by country (2009 CIA World Factbook figures). This article includes two versions of the list of countries by crude mortality rate. Methodology Crude mortality rate refers to the numb ...
*
List of countries by life expectancy The article documents lists of countries by average life expectancy by various sources of estimates. Methodology The life expectancy is shown separately for males, and for females, as well as a combined figure. Several non-Sovereign state, sove ...
*
Maximum life span Maximum life span (or, for humans Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most populous and widespread species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as ...
* Micromort *
Mortality displacement Mortality displacement is a temporary increase in the mortality rate Mortality rate, or death rate, is a measure of the number of death (1906) Death is the permanent, Irreversible process, irreversible cessation of all biological proce ...
* Risk adjusted mortality rate * Vital statistics *
Medical statistics Medical statistics deals with applications of statistics Statistics is the discipline that concerns the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation, and presentation of data Data (; ) are individual facts, statistics, or it ...
* Weekend effect *
World population In demography, demographics, the world population is the total number of humans currently living, and was estimated to have exceeded 7.9 billion people . It took over 2 million years of prehistory, human prehistory and human history, history fo ...

World population


References


Sources


Crude death rate (per 1,000 population)
based on ''World Population Prospects The 2008 Revision'',
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization aiming to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harm ...

United Nations
. Retrieved 22 June 2010
Rank Order – Death rate
in ''CIA World Factbook''
Mortality
in ''The Medical Dictionary'', Medterms. Retrieved 22 June 2010

US Centers for Disease Control Retrieved 22 June 2010 * Edmond Halley
''An Estimate of the Degrees of the Mortality of Mankind''
(1693)


External links


DeathRiskRankings: Calculates risk of dying in the next year using MicroMorts and displays risk rankings for up to 66 causes of death

Data regarding death rates by age and cause in the United States (from Data360)

Complex Emergency Database (CE-DAT): Mortality data from conflict-affected populations

Human Mortality Database: Historic mortality data from developed nations

Deaths this year

OUR WORLD IN DATA: Number of deaths per year, World
{{Authority control Population Demography Epidemiology Medical aspects of death Actuarial science Population ecology Medical statistics Temporal rates