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Little difference in Life Expectancy among elderly regardless of gender, race or country

Reader comment on item: Muslim Hours at Municipal Swimming Pools in the West
in response to reader comment: Life expectancy of "three score and ten"

Submitted by Jerry Blondell, Ph.D., M.P.H. (United States), Oct 20, 2009 at 10:21

Many do not realize that the difference in life expectancy between countries and even between races and genders is largely driven by differences in infant mortality and at younger ages. I seriously doubt the Biblical report (Psalms 90:10) takes into account infant mortality. At birth in the USA, female life expectancy is 5 years longer than males, and whites 5 years longer than blacks. However, at age 60 there is only a 2.9 year difference between the genders and one year between the races.

The difference continues to shrink until by age 85 it is one year between the genders and none between races. See Tables 7 and 8 in "Deaths: Final Data for 2006" by Heron et al. CDC (2009) http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr57/nvsr57_14.pdf.

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