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NJ Health Statistics
1997

Mortality
Statistical Overview

Number of Deaths

There were 72,039 deaths of New Jersey residents during the calendar year 1997, which was a decrease of 1,073 deaths from the 1996 total. This represents a 1.5 percent decrease from the number of deaths in 1996. There were 61,504 white, 9,006 black, 470 Asian and Pacific Islander, 203 Asian Indian, 34 American Indian and 13 other race deaths (CHS, 2000b). There were 809 death records on which the race was not classifiable or not stated. There were slightly more female than male resident deaths, 37,306 and 34,731, respectively.

Mortality Rate

The New Jersey crude death rate per 100,000 population was 894.6, a decrease of 2.3 percent from the 1996 rate (Martin, R.M., et al., 1999). The U.S. crude death rate in 1997 was 864.7 deaths per 100,000 population, slightly lower than the rate of 872.5 for 1996 (Hoyert, D.L., et al., 1999).

TABLE M1. DEATH RATES BY AGE GROUP
NEW JERSEY, 1996 AND 1997
AGE GROUP 1997 1996
NUMBER RATE* NUMBER RATE*
UNDER 5 870 156.2 936 163.6
5-14 194 17.4 197 17.8
15-24 666 68.0 663 68.1
25-44 4,168 163.1 4,781 187.7
45-64 11,223 645.7 11,458 678.3
65-84 36,018 3,668.1 36,840 3,755.5
85 AND OVER 18,807 15,194.8 18,207 15,346.9
NOT STATED 93 N/A 30 N/A
TOTAL 72,039 460.3 73,112 481.9
*RATES ARE COMPUTED PER 100,000 AGE-SPECIFIC POPULATIONRATES 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 460.3 in 1997, a slight decrease over the 1996 rate of 481.9. In 1997 the U.S. age-adjusted death rate decreased 2.5 percent to 479.1 deaths per 100,000 U.S. standard million population from the 1996 rate of 491.6. While New Jersey's crude death rate was 3.5 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 (849.9 per 100,000 standard million), followed by black females (536.1), white males (530.0) and white females (347.9). 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, 1997).

Age-specific death rates were stable or declined in all age groups between 1996 and 1997 (Table M1). The numbers of deaths decreased in most age groups, though there was a slight increase among 15 through 24 year olds and a larger increase among those 85 and over.

Mortality rates vary among New Jersey=s counties (Table M28). 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 367.9 in Hunterdon to 589.7 in Essex County (Figure M1).

Figure M1. Age-Adjusted Death Rates By County
New Jersey, 1997

Figure 1


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