A Decade in Life Expectancy Gained Since 1970

Previous estimates of ongoing gains in life expectancy at birth put it at around a fifth of a year every year. Life expectancy at 60 rises at about half that pace - a tenth of what is needed for actuarial escape velocity. This has been incidental life extension, achieved without any deliberate attempt to tackle aging.

New data suggests a slightly higher pace for gains in life expectancy at birth, with a decade gained since 1970. This is probably largely driven by increased wealth and accompanying reductions in childhood mortality:

In the first Global Burden of Disease Study 2010 paper [the] authors present new estimates of life expectancy for the last four decades in 187 different countries. While overall life expectancy is increasing globally, the gap in life expectancy between countries with the highest and lowest life expectancies has remained similar since 1970.

The new estimates show that, globally, in 2010 a man's average life expectancy at birth had increased by 11.1 years (19.7%) since 1970, from 56.4 years in 1970, to 67.5 years in 2010. For women, life expectancy increased by 12.1 years (19.8%) during the same period, from 61.2 years in 1970, to 73.3 years in 2010. Deaths in children under five years old have declined by almost 60% since 1970, from 16.4 million deaths in 1970 to 6.8 million in 2010.

Link: http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-12-world-population-gains-decade-life.html

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