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The Centers for Disease Control reports that in 2014, “The infant mortality rate decreased 2.3% to a historic low of 582.1 infant deaths per 100,000 live births.”

That rate is relatively high for a rich country like the U.S. (Canada and the UK both have infant mortality rates that are about one-fifth lower), but the decline is very good news.

The CDC also said:

    • Life expectancy was unchanged at 78.8 – and women still outlive men by about five years on average, which explains the gender disparity in retirement homes. (As my then-widower father put it a few years ago based on his experience, when an unattached male moves into such a facility, “the casseroles start flying.” He remarried within a year.)
    • Death rates for the three leading causes of death – heart disease, cancer and lower respiratory illness – fell slightly. Death rates for three other of the top 10 causes – Alzheimer’s, “unintentional injuries” and suicide – rose slightly.

Here’s the whole report.

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