Special Collection 2 - Article 10 | Pages 255–276

Cause-specific contributions to black-white differences in male mortality from 1960 to 1995

By Irma Elo, Greg L. Drevenstedt

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Date received:17 Feb 2003
Date published:16 Apr 2004
Word count:3825


Between 1960 and 1995 the black-white difference in male life expectancy in the United States increased from 6.7 years to 8.2 years. To provide insights into why mortality trends have been more adverse for black men than for white men, we investigate which causes of death were principally responsible for changes in the black-white difference in male mortality at ages 15-64 between 1960 and 1995. We find that black-white differences in male mortality varied substantially during this period. The gap increased in the 1960s, declined in the 1970s, and widened in the 1980s-early 1990s.
Our findings reveal considerable variation in black-white disparities by cause of death and by age, as well as changes in the relative importance of various causes of death to the black-white male mortality disparity over time. The results suggest that consequences of black-white differences in socioeconomic status, access to quality health care, living conditions, and residential segregation vary by cause of death.

Author's Affiliation

Irma Elo - University of Pennsylvania, United States of America [Email]
Greg L. Drevenstedt - University of Pennsylvania, United States of America [Email]

Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research

» Contribution of smoking-attributable mortality to life-expectancy differences by marital status among Finnish men and women, 1971-2010
Volume 36 - Article 8

» Age patterns of racial/ethnic/nativity differences in disability and physical functioning in the United States
Volume 31 - Article 17

» Educational differences in all-cause mortality by marital status: Evidence from Bulgaria, Finland and the United States
Volume 19 - Article 60

» Cause-specific contributions to sex differences in adult mortality among whites and African Americans between 1960 and 1995
Volume 13 - Article 19

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