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New Jersey Health Statistics 1996

MORTALITY
1996

 

STATISTICAL OVERVIEW

NUMBER OF DEATHS

There were 73,112 deaths of New Jersey residents during the calendar year 1996, which was a decrease of 1,108 deaths from the 1995 total. This is a 1.5 percent decrease from the number of deaths in 1995. There were 61,890 white, 9,669 black, 468 Asian and Pacific Islander, 215 Asian Indian, 37 American Indian, and four other race deaths (CHS, 1998b). There were 829 death records on which the race was not classifiable or not stated. There were slightly more female resident deaths than male, 37,335 and 35,773, respectively. On four records, the sex of the decedent was not stated.

MORTALITY RATE

The New Jersey crude death rate per 100,000 population was 915.3, a decrease of 2.0 percent from the 1995 rate (Martin, R.M., et al., 1998). The U.S. crude death rate in 1996 was 872.5 deaths per 100,000 population, slightly lower than the rate of 880.0 for 1995 (Peters, K.D., et al., 1998). The number of deaths recorded in 1996 was the highest number of deaths ever reported in the United States.

TABLE M1. DEATH RATES BY AGE GROUP
NEW JERSEY, 1995 AND 1996
AGE GROUP 1996 1995
NUMBER RATE* NUMBER RATE*
UNDER 5 936 163.6 955 164.6
5-14 197 17.8 213 19.7
15-24 663 68.1 688 70.0
25-44 4,781 187.7 5,467 214.1
45-64 11,458 678.3 11,904 716.6
65-84 36,840 3,755.5 37,245 3,809.9
85 AND OVER 18,207 15,346.9 17,726 15,465.4
NOT STATED 30 N/A 22 N/A
TOTAL 73,112 481.9 74,220 502.6
*RATES ARE COMPUTED PER 100,000 AGE-SPECIFIC POPULATION
RATES PRESENTED FOR THE TOTAL POPULATION ARE AGE-ADJUSTED

The age distribution of the population is a major factor affecting the crude death rate. Age-adjusted death rates eliminate age as a factor in the differences found when comparing crude death rates among areas or over time. They are better measures of mortality risk from factors other than age. New Jersey's age-adjusted death rate was 481.9 in 1996, a 4.1 percent decrease from the 1995 rate of 502.6. In 1996 the U.S. age-adjusted death rate decreased 2.4 percent to an all-time low of 491.6 deaths per 100,000 U.S. standard million population from the 1995 rate of 503.9. Thus, while New Jersey's crude death rate was 4.9 percent higher than the U.S. rate, when the effect of age is removed, New Jersey's death rate is slightly lower than that of the nation. This also means that mortality risks from factors other than age for New Jersey residents are slightly less than those of U.S. residents overall.

Age-adjusted death rates vary widely for the major race-sex subgroups of the population. Age-adjusted death rates are highest for black males (952.6 per 100,000 standard million), followed by black females (578.9), white males (552.9) and white females (353.3). Studies have shown that mortality risks (other than those related to age) are two to three times as high among black males as among white females in New Jersey, regardless of the standard population used (CHS, 1995).

Age-specific death rates declined in all age groups between 1995 and 1996 (Table M1). The age group comprised of 25 through 44 year olds experienced the greatest decrease in age-specific death rate with a 12.3 percent drop. Nine of the ten leading causes of death for this age group had fewer deaths in 1996 than in 1995 (suicide deaths increased), but the largest decrease was in the leading cause of death for 25 through 44 year olds: deaths due to HIV infection which decreased 29.8 percent in this age group.

Mortality rates vary among New Jersey's counties (Table M27). To eliminate the effect of differing age distributions on the death rates, these rates were age-adjusted. The resulting age-adjusted rates per 100,000 standard population ranged from 377.1 in Hunterdon to 634.8 in Essex County (Figure M1).

FIGURE M1. AGE-ADJUSTED DEATH RATES BY COUNTY
NEW JERSEY, 1996

County Map


 
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Department of Health
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