Well, This News Was Unexpected. Life Expectancy In The U.S. Took A Dip In 2020, And The Pandemic Is A Big Reason Why.

FILE - In this Friday, March 27, 2020 file photo, William Samuels delivers caskets to the Gerard Neufeld Funeral Home during the coronavirus pandemic in the Queens borough of New York. A report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021 finds that life expectancy in the United States dropped a staggering one year during the first half of 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic caused its first wave of deaths. Minorities suffered the biggest impact, with Blacks losing nearly three years and Hispanics, nearly two years, according to preliminary estimates. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

There’s a perception that Americans are living longer than every, but a new study published Thursday shows that is not the case.

According to CDC data, life expectancy in the U.S. has dropped to its lowest level in 15 years. As of 2020, life expectancy for the the total U.S. population fell to 77.8%, which is the lowest level since 2006.

The numbers were even worse for black Americans and Latinos.  Life expectancy for black populations had the biggest decline in 2020.  The age is now 72, which is the lowest it’s been since 2001. Life expectancy for Latinos fell 1.9 years and is now at 79.9. 

The reason for the larger decline with blacks and Latinos according to the experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is they had disproportional effects from COVID-19. 

Dr. Leon McDougle, the present of the National Medical Association explained it this way. “It was disturbing to see that gains that have been made for the Black community and decreasing the gap between life expectancy for African Americans and (white) Americans over the past six years had come to a halt.”

The trend over the past four decades is while life expectancy has increased slowly, it was very infrequent that the numbers actually declined.  One factor that affected the overall number from 2014 – 2017 was it was the height of the opioid epidemic.

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