A US health agency said on Wednesday that the average age of Americans would drop by a year and a half to 77.3 years in 2020, its lowest level since 2003. The main reason for the low average age is death due to the corona epidemic.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said this is the biggest decline in the US in a year since World War II. Between 1942 and 1943, the average age dropped by 2.9 years during World War II, after which it is now 6 months less than the February 2021 estimate.
CDC researcher Elizabeth Arias, who worked on the report, told Reuters, “The average age of Americans has been gradually increasing every year for the past several decades, but it is seeing a decline between the years 2019 and 2020. The decline in these years was so great that it took us back to the 2003 figures. Looks like we’ve lost a decade.
The CDC believes that the death toll from the coronavirus is behind the average age of Americans, which accounts for nearly three-quarters, or 74 percent, of drug overdoses. The CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) released data last week showing that the number of people who died from drug overdoses in 2020 increased by nearly 30 percent.
The CDC report also noted that racial, gender, and ethnic inequalities have worsened during this period. The average age of black people fell by 2.9 years to 71.8 in 2020, and the average age of Hispanic men fell by 3.7 years to 75.3. The average age of black people is at the lowest level since 2000.