Academic journal article Perspectives in Public Health

Dementia and Flu Caused Spike in Deaths for Elderly

Academic journal article Perspectives in Public Health

Dementia and Flu Caused Spike in Deaths for Elderly

Article excerpt

In the early months of 2015, there was a large increase in deaths of the elderly which was not repeated in the early part of 2016.

Last year, there were 529,613 deaths registered in England and Wales, an increase of 5.6% compared with 2014, with 86% of the extra deaths occurring in the over 75s and 38% in the over 90s.

There are a variety of reasons for this, including that the main flu virus in 2015 was a strain known to target older people, with outbreaks in care homes. People with dementia were particularly vulnerable to flu, and there was evidence that the flu vaccine was less effective than expected.

The report from the Office of National Statistics compares 2015 with 2003, when deaths were at a similar level and shows that the overall mortality rate was 20% lower in 2015. Taking into account population increase, this indicates that the age distribution of the deaths in 2015 is also different from 2003, with a larger proportion of deaths in the very old age groups. …

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