Mortality rate, or death rate, is a measure of the number of deaths (in general, or due to a specific cause) in a particular population, 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", which is either the prevalence or incidence of a disease, and also from the incidence rate (the number of newly appearing cases of the disease per unit of time).
Crude death rate by country (2006).
Related measures of mortality
Other specific measures of mortality include:
Crude death rate – the total number of deaths per year per 1,000 people. As of 2016[update] the crude death rate for the whole world is 7.8 per 1,000 (down from 8.37 per 1,000 in 2009) according to the current CIA World Factbook.
The birth rate is 18.5 per 1,000 per year. The net population growth is 1.06 percent. Note that the crude death rate can be misleading. The crude death rate depends on the age (and gender) specific mortality rates and the age (and gender) distribution of the population. The number of deaths per 1,000 people can be higher in developed nations than in less-developed countries, despite a higher life expectancy in developed countries due to better standards of health. This happens because developed countries typically have a much higher proportion of older people, due to both lower birth rates and lower mortality rates. A more complete picture of mortality is given by a life table, which shows the mortality rate separately for each age. A life table is necessary to give a good estimate of life expectancy.
Perinatal mortality rate – the sum of neonatal deaths and fetal deaths (stillbirths) per 1,000 births.
Scatter plot of the natural logarithm of the crude death rate against the natural log of per capita real GDP. The slope of the trend line is the elasticity of the crude death rate with respect to per capita real income. It indicates that a 10% increase in per capita real income is associated with a 1.5% decrease in the crude death rate. Source: World Development Indicators.
According to Jean Ziegler (the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food for 2000 to March 2008), mortality due to malnutrition accounted for 58% of the total mortality in 2006: "In the world, approximately 62 millions 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".
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%.
Use in health care
Early recording of mortality rate in European cities proved highly useful in controlling the plague and other major epidemics. Public health in industrialised countries was transformed when mortality rate as a function of age, sex and socioeconomic status emerged in the late 19th and 20th centuries. This track record has led to the argument that inexpensive recording of vital statistics in developing countries may become the most effective means to improve global health. Gathering official mortality statistics can be very difficult in developing countries, where many individuals lack the ability or knowledge to report incidences of death to National Vital Statistics Registries. This can lead to distortion in mortality statistics and a wrongful assessment of overall health. Studies conducted in northeastern Brazil, where underreporting of infant mortality is of huge concern, have shown that alternative methods of data collection, including the use of "popular Death Reporters" (Members of the community who are active in traditional death rituals of the child and the family grieving process), have been very successful in providing valid, qualitative mortality statistics, effectively reducing underreporting.
This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.