Mortality Statistics for the Oldest-Old:
An Evaluation of Canadian Data

Robert Bourbeau
André Lebel

Date Received:8 February 2000
Date Published:15 March 2000

Abstract:
The main purposes of this paper is to evaluate the quality of Canadian data among the oldest-old (80+) over the 1951-1995 period, and to compare estimations of Canadian probabilities of death based on the extinct generation method with those of other developed countries in order to ascertain whether Canada experiences a distinct low mortality profile. The evaluation of the data quality suggests that Canadian data are quite good up to the age of 100, and that the main problems concern the centenarians (overstatement of age at death and errors in census age declarations). International comparisons on the basis of two mortality indicators for the 80-99 age-interval lead to the same conclusion: Canadian mortality is lower than in most European countries. The best match is still with the United States.

Authors' affiliation:
Robert Bourbeau, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor, Department of Demography, Interuniversity Center for Demographic Studies, Université de Montréal, Canada

André Lebel, M.Sc. is a Research Assistant, Department of Demography, Interuniversity Center for Demographic Studies, Université de Montréal, Canada

Table of Contents:
1    Background
2    Data: Population and Deaths
2.1    Population
2.2    Deaths
3    Method
3.1    Method of Extinct Generations
3.2    Estimating the Deaths of Non Extinct Generations: The Survival Ratio Method
4    Findings
4.1    Data Quality of Deaths and Population
4.1.1    Age Heaping and Generation Heaping for Deaths
4.1.2    Highest Age at Death Comparison
4.1.3    Overstatement of Age at Death among Centenarians
4.1.4    Overestimation of Centenarians in Canadians Censuses
4.2    Canadian Mortality and International Comparaison
4.2.1    Canadian Mortality at Advanced Ages
4.2.2    Canadian Life Tables and estimated probabilities of dying
4.2.3    International comparisons on the basis of estimated probabilities of dying
4.2.4    International comparisons on the basis of age-standardized death rates
5    Conclusion
6    Acknowledgements
   Notes
   References
   Tables
   Figures

Keywords: mortality, oldest-old, data quality, Canada, international comparisons

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Word count: 5,425

1. Background


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Mortality Statistics for the Oldest-Old: An Evaluation of Canadian Data
Robert Bourbeau and André Lebel
© 2000 Max-Planck-Gesellschaft ISSN 1435-9871
http://www.demographic-research.org/Volumes/Vol2/2