New estimates from the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study suggest mortality rates for adults aged 20-45 years have stagnated and, in some cases, are increasing.
An analysis of global, regional and national age-sex-specific mortality and life expectancy data, published in the Lancet earlier this week, shows that improvements in global mortality rates have been less pronounced in adults than in children, and rates stagnated or got worse in some countries in 2017.
The greatest progress across age groups was for children younger than five years, with mortality dropping by 216 deaths per 1,000 livebirths in 1950 to 38.9 deaths per 1,000 livebirths in 2017, with huge reductions across countries. However, there were still 5.4 million deaths among children younger than five years in the world in 2017.
Progress has been less pronounced and more variable for adults, especially for adult males, who had stagnant or increasing mortality rates in several countries.
The gap between male and female life expectancy between 1950 and 2017, while relatively stable at the global level, shows distinctive patterns and is largest in central Europe, eastern Europe, and central Asia, and smallest in south Asia, the data show.