Life expectancy in the CNMI for both sexes saw a slight increase last year, with a minimal bump from 75.4 years in 2017 to 75.7 in 2018, according to the 2018 annual report of the Commonwealth Health Care Corp.
Comparatively, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention places the 2017 life expectancy for the total U.S. population at 78.6 years—a decrease from 78.7 years in 2016.
The CNMI data collected for 2018 consists of data from a two-year gap, from 2016 to 2018.
In its report, CHCC concluded that males live about three years less than females, with the males having a life expectancy of 74.4 years compared to the females’ 77.4 years.
From 2013, which garnered the highest life expectancy at 76.5 years, up to this year saw minor fluctuations and rises over the years.
Life expectancy, a statistical measure of the average time a person is expected to live based on birth year, current age and other demographic factors including gender. The most commonly used measure of life expectancy is at birth.
In recent years, the U.S. has seen overall life expectancy decrease from 78.7 years in 2015 to 78.6 years in 2017. An Associated Press report quotes experts as saying that the opioid addiction and an increase in suicides are the main reason behind the U.S. seeing lower life expectancy rates.
The AP partnered with the National Center for Health Statistics, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, The National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems, and the National Center for Health Statistics to conduct the study. The group used six years of death records and demographic data to create a life expectancy estimate for almost all census tract in the U.S.
CHCC reports that the total number of deaths in 2018 was at 678 cases, just four cases fewer than 2017’s 682. CHCC also reports that the leading causes of death in 2018 were non-communicable diseases at 431 total cases such as diseases of the circulatory system, neoplasms, endocrine, nutritional and metabolic diseases, and diseases of the respiratory system. The list continues on with other cases such as external causes of morbidity, certain infectious and parasitic diseases, and many more causes of death.