US life expectancy continues to drop

By Scoop
April 11, 2022 · less than 3 min read

Another fall in 2021 sees an historic decline in the life expectancy of Americans.  

The pandemic toll 

In the decade leading up to the coronavirus pandemic, US life expectancy was fluctuating less than 0.1 years every year. But then, like a wrecking ball, 2020 came along and brought with it a virus that shattered the equilibrium, and has ultimately killed more than 980,000 people here in the States. 

In 2020, life expectancy fell by a staggering 1.9 years. And now, in the latest study from medRxiv, 2021 saw another fall, of 0.4 years, down to an average expectancy of 76.6. This is five years less than the average among a set of 19 peer countries, with which the US should really be on a par.  

The fallout of faulty leadership  

The big discrepancy for the US compared to other countries delivers a stark review of its handling of the pandemic. According to Dr Steven Woolf, director emeritus of the Center on Society and Health, “What happened in the US is less about the variants than the levels of resistance to vaccination and the public’s rejection of practices, such as masking and mandates, to reduce viral transmission”. 

Big pushbacks against the science of combatting coronavirus have brought lethal consequences. And although for many it was plain to see, now there are numbers to back it up.  

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