Life expectancy up 7 months for Koreans born in 2019

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Life expectancy up 7 months for Koreans born in 2019

Koreans born in 2019 are expected to live 83.3 years, up seven months compared to babies born a year earlier, data from Statistics Korea showed Tuesday.
 
That’s the largest year-on-year increase since 1987.
 
Male babies are expected to live 80.3 years, up six months compared to those born in 2018, and female babies are likely to live 86.3 years, up seven months.
 
“In 2018, life expectancy nearly stayed flat due to a surge in the number of deaths amid a massive cold snap,” said Kim Soo-young, head of Population Census Division of Statistics Korea. “The life expectancy in 2019 rose as a result.”
 
Statistics Korea also said that males are less likely to live 80 years or longer than females.
 
Roughly 81 percent of all female babies born in 2019 are expected to live to at least 80, while the percentage was only 61.7 percent for male babies.
 
Government data showed that 48.1 percent of male babies born in 2019 and 39.1 percent of female babies have a chance of dying from the three biggest causes of deaths for Koreans — cancer, heart disease and pneumonia — later in life.
 
In case of male babies, cancer had the highest possibility with 27 percent; pneumonia with 11 percent; and heart disease with 10.1 percent. For female babies, cancer took up 16.2 percent, heart disease 13 percent while pneumonia 9.9 percent.
 
If cancer is excluded from the possible cause of death, the life expectancy for Koreans will rise about 3.7 years, while it will increase 1.4 years without heart disease and one year without pneumonia.
 
Korea’s life expectancy is longer than the average life expectancy of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) member nations. The country’s male life expectancy was 2.2 years longer than the OECD average and the figure for Korean women was 2.9 years longer.
 
The country with the longest male life expectancy among OECD nations was Switzerland with 81.9 years, while Japan recorded the longest life expectancy for females at 87.3 years.
 
BY IM SOUNG-BIN   [chea.sarah@joongang.co.kr]
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