Journal Article

Upsurge of homicides and its impact on life expectancy and life span inequality in Mexico, 2005–2015

Aburto, J. M., Beltrán-Sánchez, H.
American Journal of Public Health, 109:3, 483–489 (2019)
Open Access


Objectives. To quantify the effect of the upsurge of violence on life expectancy and life span inequality in Mexico after 2005.
Methods. We calculated age- and cause-specific contributions to changes in life expectancy and life span inequality conditional on surviving to age 15 years between 1995 and 2015. We analyzed homicides, medically amenable conditions, diabetes, ischemic heart diseases, and traffic accidents by state and sex.
Results. Male life expectancy at age 15 years increased by more than twice in 1995 to 2005 (1.17 years) than in 2005 to 2015 (0.55 years). Life span inequality decreased by more than half a year for males in 1995 to 2005, whereas in 2005 to 2015 the reduction was about 4 times smaller. Homicides for those aged between 15 and 49 years had the largest effect in slowing down male life expectancy and life span inequality. Between 2005 and 2015, three states in the north experienced life expectancy losses while 5 states experienced increased life span inequality.
Conclusions. Ten years into the upsurge of violence, Mexico has not been able to reduce the homicide levels to those before 2005. Life expectancy and life span inequality stagnated since 2005 for young men at the national level. In some states, males live shorter lives than in 2005, on average, and experience higher uncertainty in their eventual death.

Keywords: Mexico
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