MORTALITY LEVEL AND TREND IN SOUTH AFRICA AND THEIR IMPLICATIONS
Keywords:improvement, health status, life expectancy, infant mortality, general household survey, life cycle
Mortality is a critical measure of population’s health and public health systems. Infant mortality, for example, indicates quality of life, accessibility to primary healthcare and the overall health status of a country. Reduction in infant mortality shows improvement in the health status. No credible information about mortality in South Africa because the two previous censuses’ data from Statistics South Africa (StatsSA) were not reliable, this study makes attempt to bridge the gap in the lack of knowledge. Th is study uses South African General Household Survey (SAGHS) data, to fi nd the level and trend of mortality and their implications. Data for the years, 2012, 2013 and 2015, have been used. Demographic and statistical methods, including an evaluation of data quality using UN joint score, and construction of model life tables. The results indicated that the infant mortality rate (IMR) was 43 per 1000 in 2012, 36 per 1000 in 2013 and 21 per 1000 in 2015. Th is study further indicated that the general health status of South African population improved marginally from 2012 to 2015 because the life expectancy in creas ed by 7 years for the males, and by 8 years for females, between those years. The study results that SAGHS data are reliable, mortality is decreasing with increasing life expectancy. The study recommends that more proactive measures need to be put in place to improve the health status of the population, especially the children because the IMR is still quite high and creates concerns.
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