Life expectancy has risen worldwide

By Amanda Stewart,

The World Healthy Organization (WHO) said in their annual report released on Thursday that life expectancy is at an all time high and has especially risen in poor countries.

Children who were born in 2012 can expect to live, on average, six more years than those who were born in 1990, according to USA Today. Girls born in 2012 can expect to live until 73 and boys, 68.

The United States is far above average with women life expectancy at 81 and men, on average, living until 76. However, the top life expectancy in the world is among Japanese women who live, on average, 87 years and Iceland whose men live to be around 81.

Liberia was among one of the most improved countries with a 20 year increase from 1990 (42 to 62). Ethiopia (45 to 64), Maldives (58 to 77), Cambodia (54 to 72), Timor-Leste(50 to 66) and Rwanda (48 to 65) all improved from the last annual report.

WHO says that these increases are due to a few factors, including: fewer children dying before the age of five due to advancements in medicine; blood pressure control and treatment have been lowering the amounts of heart attacks/stroke; declining tobacco use.

Though this seems great, the report did not only show increases. The life expectancy is still below 55 in nine countries, all in sub-Saharan Africa.

The UN News Centre also reported that almost 18,000 children all over the world died each day in 2012. Those born into “rich” lifestyles were less likely to die than those born into poor conditions.

“In high-income countries, much of the gain in life expectancy is due to success in tackling noncommunicable diseases,” said Ties Boerma, Director of the Department of Health Statistics and Information Systems at WHO.

The top five countries for female life expectancy are:
Japan (87)
Spain (85)
Switzerland (85)
Singapore (85)
Italy (85)
The top five countries for male life expectancy are:
Iceland (81)
Switzerland (80)
Australia (80)
Israel (80)
Singapore (80)

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