World Health Statistics 2024 reports global life expectancy declined

 Anjali Sharma

GG News Bureau
WASHINGTON -, 26th May.  
 World Health Statistics 2024 in a report published on Saturday showed that between 2019 and 2021, global life expectancy declined by 1.8 years to 71.4 years (back to the level of 2012).

According to a new report by WHO released on Friday stated that the deadly Covid-19 pandemic reversed the last 10 years’ steady gain seen in life expectancy at birth and healthy life expectancy at birth worldwide.

It said that within 2 years global healthy life expectancy dipped by 1.5 years to 61.9 years in 2021 (back to the level of 2012).

WHO chief Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said “In just two years, the Covid-19 pandemic erased a decade of gains in life expectancy.”

He stressed the importance of the Pandemic Agreement, Tedros said it will “not only strengthen global health security, but protect long-term investments in health and promote equity within and between countries”.

In 2020, Covid infection ranked as the third highest cause of mortality globally, while it emerged as the second leading cause of death in 2021.

“Nearly 13 million lives were lost during this period,” the report said.

The report showed that noncommunicable diseases such as ischaemic heart disease and stroke, cancers, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, and diabetes accounted for 78 per cent of non-Covid deaths during the pandemic.

The pandemic increased obesity in young and old (over one billion), underweight (more than half a billion) and malnutrition in children.

“About 148 million children under five years old were affected by stunting (too short for age), 45 million suffering from wasting (too thin for height), and 37 million overweight,” the report said.

The report called for “accelerating progress” to meet the health under SDGs.

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