Since 2011, life expectancy in the US has been worse than most other high-income countries. The worst 10 for men (blue) and women (pink) are shown here

US ranks among the WORST for life expectancy improvements in 22 rich countries, while scientists blame the opioid crisis and the 2008 financial crash

  • Life expectancy in the US has virtually stalled since 2011, according to international research
  • It improved by just two weeks for American men and two months for women
  • Only Iceland had a smaller improvement for men from 22 rich countries

Improving life expectancy has come to a halt in the US worse than most other rich countries, research shows.

Experts say the 2008 financial crash may have fueled the trend, along with the current opioid epidemic that has ravaged the nation.

Since 2011, average life expectancy in the US has improved by only two and a half weeks for an American man and two months for a woman.

Only one country, Iceland, showed a smaller gain in life expectancy for men. The US was among the bottom five for women, before only Canada, England and Wales and Iceland.


It means that today the average boy born in the US will live until they are just over 76 and a girl turns around 81.

Since 2011, life expectancy in the US has been worse than most other high-income countries. The worst 10 for men (blue) and women (pink) are shown here

Since 2011, life expectancy in the US has been worse than most other high-income countries. The worst 10 for men (blue) and women (pink) are shown here

The disturbing findings were revealed in the first international study to compare life expectancy and death rates from 1970 to 2016 in 22 rich countries.

These include Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, and countries in Western Europe, including France, Italy, and Switzerland.

The researchers believe that life expectancy in the US has come to a halt, partly due to the financial crash of 2008.

They also point to the continuing opioid epidemic, which kills around 50,000 lives each year.

NHS waiting lists are at a record level


A damning report has shown that more than 4.41 million patients were on the waiting list in August – 250,000 more than last year.

And 662,053 people have waited more than 18 weeks for routine treatments, such as joint replacements – the highest since records began.

Health leaders condemned the numbers and said they show that the NHS could endure the worst winter ever with Brexit, harsh weather and flu on the horizon.

NHS bosses said trusts across the country were "incredibly hard". work to prepare for the winter and ensure that patients are kept safe.

But the Royal College of Nursing fears that more and more patients will be treated in corridors as the pressure on health care increases.


And the Royal College of Surgeons warned the coming winter pressure, Brexit and the NHS pension crisis will cause a "perfect storm" for hospitals this winter.

Experts called for & # 39; fast and far-reaching & # 39; government action to set up the NHS for the winter.

The waiting times refer to patients who wait for routine but important operations such as joint replacements.

The ones included in the 4.41 million are those who have been referred for surgery by a specialist, but who have not yet had the procedure.

That figure has risen by 250,000 compared to the same time last year and 1.1 million from August 2017.


But the study was even weaker for England and Wales, where the risk of death among 25-50-year-old men and women is now 20 to 40 percent higher than the average in the 22 other countries.

The analysis, from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the Max Planck Institute in Germany, showed that the mortality rate had risen in every age group in the British countries, except for young boys.

The study, published in the journal Lancet Public Health, says that life expectancy may have been affected by cuts in the NHS and a flu outbreak, with 44,000 people killed in 2014 and 2015.

Although the life expectancy of men has largely increased in line with other countries, women lag behind in 20th place out of 22 in 2016.

This is probably because British women started smoking earlier in the 20th century than those in other countries, and became heavier smokers.


Life expectancy may also have been influenced by the North to South gap in England, meaning that younger adults further down the country are more likely to die from alcohol and drug abuse.

The study concludes that the increase in deaths among working-age people, which began in the mid-2000s, & # 39; urgent attention & # 39; needs.

Chief author Professor David Leon of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine said: & # 39; These trends represent a real reversal in the situation in England and Wales in the 1970s and 1980s, when this working age was lower than elsewhere, almost certain partly because during this period the UK as a whole had a remarkably low death rate due to external causes such as injuries, poisoning and violence.

& # 39; Further work is urgently needed to understand the reasons for this turnaround since 2000, and to what extent it may be due to adverse trends in injury, violence, and alcohol or drug-related deaths. & # 39;

Professor Leon added: & # 39; Today the world faces major challenges, from climate change to the disruption of long-standing aspects of international cooperation and cooperation, many of which can have a negative impact on future health progress. & # 39;


  1. Norway 1.62
  2. Japan 1.56
  3. Luxembourg 1.41
  4. Ireland 1.30
  5. Denmark 1.25
  6. Switzerland 1.25
  7. Finland 1.23
  8. New Zealand 1.20
  9. Austria 1.07
  10. Spain 1.01
  11. Italy 1.01
  12. Belgium 1.00
  13. France 0.89
  14. Australia 0.83
  15. Portugal 0.81
  16. Sweden 0.78
  17. The Netherlands 0.68
  18. Germany W 0.62
  19. Canada 0.45
  20. Scotland 0.42
  21. England and Wales 0.37
  22. US -0.05
  23. Iceland -0.17


  1. Luxembourg 1.57
  2. Japan 1.28
  3. New Zealand 1.17
  4. Denmark 0.96
  5. Belgium 0.79
  6. Norway 0.72
  7. Spain 0.70
  8. Ireland 0.70
  9. Australia 0.61
  10. Italy 0.60
  11. Finland 0.56
  12. Switzerland 0.54
  13. Portugal 0.54
  14. Austria 0.49
  15. Sweden 0.42
  16. Germany W 0.40
  17. France 0.30
  18. The Netherlands 0.26
  19. Scotland 0.24
  20. US 0.18
  21. Canada 0.16
  22. England and Wales 0.11
  23. Iceland 0.01

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