Lifespans dropped in some U.S. counties

Catherine Clabby in American Scientist:

Screenhunter_02_oct_17_1150By examining death rates county-by-county, public health researchers found that life spans, especially among women, fell in some United States counties. The numbers were small but such a reversal of fortune was, well, shocking.

“We started looking at disparity questions. This became arguably a bigger finding and a more depressing finding,” said Majid Ezzati, an associate professor at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Ezzati, whose research results appeared in PLoS Medicine, is among scholars dicing and splicing mortality data to create more precise pictures of lifespan trends in the United States. The nation is not known as the life-expectancy leader in the developed world. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ranks the life expectancy of women in the U.S. 27th globally.

More here.