According to a study released yesterday by the University of Coimbra (UC) and published in the journal of the American Academy of Sciences, PNAS (Annals of the National Academy of Sciences), Portugal has been recording a “very favorable evolution in the indicators of the inequality in mortality”, getting closer and closer to the rest of European countries.
The study aimed to compare the evolution of inequalities in mortality between the United States (US) and Europe between 1990 and 2018 and involved scientists from 15 American and European universities, including Paula Santana and Cláudia Costa, from the Center for Geography Studies and Territorial Planning (CEGOT) of the UC.
In a note sent to Lusa, a Portuguese university explained that the analysis in different countries was done by age group, sex and poverty level in the area of residence, while in the US they were also taken into account as ethnic inequalities.
Paula Santana, coordinator of the study for Portugal states that “in 1990, the mortality of Portuguese was very different from other European countries, especially among the younger ones, having changed rapidly and in 2005 how mortality rates compared well with those of the richest countries in Europe”.
According to the study, in Europe, “geographical inequalities in mortality arise, fundamentally, from young adults”, thus becoming “evident that for children and young people, inequalities in mortality are not influenced by the area of residence : poor and rich areas have the same mortality patterns”.
If we focus only on a comparison between the US and Europe, the results are not very encouraging for the Americans, as “in 1990 the life expectancy of Americans in the richest areas was slightly lower than the life expectancy at birth for Europeans ” However, the study continues, “life expectancy was considerably lower for Americans living in the poorest areas”, and “in the case of life expectancy for African Americans, it was found to be consistently lower, whether in rich or poor areas, when compared to Americans and Europeans”.
The CEGOT researchers also concluded that, in the period from 2012 to 2018, there was in the American reality “a stagnation or even a reversal in inequality”.