New York City's Death Rate Reaches Record Low
New York City's overall death rate reached a record low in2006 in part because of a decrease in AIDS-related deaths, the healthcommissioner announced on Tuesday, the AP/NewYork Times reports. According to the city Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, the total number of deaths decreased from57,068 in 2005 to 55,391 in 2006. In addition, deaths from AIDS-relatedcomplications fell from 1,419 to 1,209 between 2005 and 2006 -- a decrease ofalmost 15%. The number of AIDS-related deaths in 2006 is the lowest numbersince 1984, when 952 deaths from the disease were recorded.
Researchers said that the decrease in AIDS-related deaths is because of effortsaimed at reducing the spread of HIV, including needle-exchange programs andexpanded HIV testing, as well as slower disease progression.
AIDS-related deaths in New York Cityremain concentrated among minority populations, the AP/Times reports.According to 2006 statistics, about:
- 34% of deaths occurred among black men;
- 21% of deaths occurred among black women;
- 11% of deaths occurred among white men; and
- 3% of deaths occurred among white women.
Althoughrecorded new HIV cases among men who have sex with men have been increasing in New York City, the trendhas not affected death rates.
Another primary reason for New York City's decreased death rate is the lower number ofdeaths from smoking-related illnesses, the AP/Times reports (AP/NewYork Times, 1/8).
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