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Mortality rates up sharply in 2014

Mortality rates up sharply in 2014

Taipei, June 17 (CNA) With no major natural disasters or disease outbreaks, standardized mortality rates (SMR) in Taiwan increased by 5.5 percent last year, the Ministry of Health and Welfare announced Wednesday.
A total of 162,911 people died in Taiwan in 2014, up 8,537 from the previous year. This compares with an annual death increase of between 1,000 and 2,000 in previous years, the ministry said as it published the top 10 causes of death last year.
Cancer remained the top cause of death in Taiwan last year, with 46,094, or 28.3 percent, succumbing to malignant tumors, it said.
The next most common causes of death were heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, pneumonia, diabetes, accidents and chronic lower respiratory disease.
Rounding out the top 10 causes were hypertension-related diseases, chronic liver disease and cirrhosis, nephritis, nephritic syndrome and nephropathy.
Chen Min, head of statistics at the Ministry of Health and Welfare, said that 82.4 percent of the increased number of deaths last year were among people aged over 65.
Chen noted that as Taiwan enters a graying society, the number of elderly people dying of pneumonia has continued to climb.
However, she said that a few more years of observation will be needed of the phenomenon of increased elderly mortality before assessing whether the nation's population is showing negative growth.
Su Chia-pin, a doctor at the Centers for Disease Control, said that immunology decreases with age and that a lot of factors could cause pneumonia, such as influenza and streptococcus infection.
He urged the elderly to get vaccinated.
In addition, suicide was the 11th top cause of death last year, the fifth consecutive year that it has been outside the top 10.
In addition to cancer, which showed a drop of 0.2 percent, other causes of death showed increases, with pneumonia showing the largest increase of 9.9 percent.
Lung cancer topped the cause of death among all cancers, followed by liver and colorectal cancer.
Rounding out the top 10 cancer deaths were breast cancer, oral cancer, prostate cancer, gastric cancer, pancreatic cancer, esophageal cancer and cervical cancer.
The number of deaths from lung, liver and colorectal cancer accounted for half of all cancer deaths last year. (By Chen Ching-fang and Lilian Wu)


Updated : 2021-09-19 19:41 GMT+08:00