Average life expectancy for men drops for the first time on record


Figures released this morning have revealed that the Covid-19 pandemic has caused average life expectancy for men in the UK to drop for the first time on record.

The figures also revealed that there was a startling variation between the four nations of the UK – with men and women in England expected to live more than two years longer than those in Scotland at birth.

According to t he Mirror, the data was released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The publication stated that experts have said that the increased number of people dying due to coronavirus is responsible for the declining figures.

It also explains the difference between the average life span of males and females in the UK.

Last year England recorded nearly 15 per cent more deaths than normal, an ONS report said.

The data shows an average male life expectancy of 79.3 years in England, 76.8 years in Scotland, 78.3 years in Wales and 78.7 years in Northern Ireland.

For women the numbers were 83.1 years in England, 81.0 years in Scotland, 82.1 years in Wales and 82.4 years in Northern Ireland.

Pamela Cobb, from the Centre for Ageing and Demography, Office for National Statistics: “Life expectancy has increased in the UK over the last 40 years, albeit at a slower pace in the last decade.

“However, the coronavirus pandemic led to a greater number of deaths than normal in 2020.

“Consequently, in the latest estimates, we see virtually no improvement in life expectancy for women compared to 2015 to 2017 at 82.9 years, while for men life expectancy has fallen back to levels reported for 2012 to 2014, at 79 years.

“This is the first time we have seen a decline when comparing non-overlapping time periods since the series began in the early 1980s.

“These estimates rely on the assumption that current levels of mortality, which are unusually high, will continue for the rest of someone’s life.

“Once the coronavirus pandemic has ended and its consequences for future mortality are known, it is possible that life expectancy will return to an improving trend in the future.”

This does not mean that a baby born in 2018 to 2020 will go on to live a shorter life
This does not mean that a baby born in 2018 to 2020 will go on to live a shorter life

The ONS has cautioned that babies born in the past three years are unlikely to live a shorter life, and that previous trends could continue beyond the pandemic.

Its report said: “This does not mean that a baby born in 2018 to 2020 will go on to live a shorter life. The reported life expectancies assume that the higher-than-average mortality that we observed in 2018 to 2020 will continue.

“It is possible that life expectancy will return to an improving trend in the future, once the coronavirus pandemic has ended and its consequences for future mortality are known.”

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