TRENDS IN LIFE EXPECTANCY AND MORTALITY: A COMPARISON OF HISPANICS AND NON-HISPANICS IN THE SOUTHWEST UNITED STATES, 1990 TO 2010

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This project uses data from the National Vital Statistic System to study trends in rates and causes of deaths among Hispanics compared to non-Hispanics in the Southwest United States. Denominators are from the Modified Age, Race/Ethnicity, and Sex file (1990) and Bridged Race Files (2000, 2010) while numerator data are from the mortality detail files and Linked Infant Birth and Death files. The study had three specific aims: 1) estimate life expectancy for Hispanics and non-Hispanics, 2) decompose life expectancy by cause-specific mortality, and 3) develop cohort and cause-specific mortality rates from 1990 to 2010. Analyses included evaluation, adjustment and correction of classification and age-reporting for data, development and evaluation of life tables and life expectancy, decomposition analysis, and development of cohorts and related cause-specific rates of mortality. Results of the lifetable analyses showed that Hispanics had a mortality advantage over non-Hispanic Whites and Blacks from 1990 to 2010 but that the advantage was shrinking, especially compared to non-Hispanic Whites. The decomposition analyses showed that compared to non-Hispanic Whites, homicide was the primary contributor to mortality for Hispanics in 1990 but dropped to the third leading cause by 2010. Diabetes rose from the third leading cause to the highest contributor from 1990 to 2010. Alternatively, non-Hispanic Whites had higher smoking related mortality from causes including lung cancer, heart diseases, and chronic lower respiratory disease. These effects differed through time, with the effects of smoking decreasing for Whites while diabetes was largely unchanged in effect. Compared to non-Hispanic Blacks, Hispanics had lower death rates from almost all causes and maintained a sizeable mortality advantage from 1990 to 2010. The cohort mortality rates showed confirmation of the patterns of life expectancy and cause-specific mortality, with Hispanics maintaining the lowest mortality rate of all groups as the cohorts aged. Hispanics have higher rates of diabetes than Whites, White have higher rates of smoking-related mortality than Hispanics, and non-Hispanic Blacks having the highest mortality rates amongst major causes. Analysis of nativity showed less persistent and meaningful patterns across time for native- and foreign-born Hispanics.

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Hispanics, Mortality, Demography, Epidemiology, Life Expectancy, Hispanic Paradox, Decomposition
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