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Natl Vital Stat Rep. 2015 Aug 31;63(9):1-117.

Deaths: Final Data for 2012.



This report presents final 2012 data on U.S. deaths, death rates, life expectancy, infant mortality, and trends by selected characteristics such as age, sex, Hispanic origin, race, state of residence, and cause of death.


Information reported on death certificates, which is completed by funeral directors, attending physicians, medical examiners, and coroners, is presented in descriptive tabulations. The original records are filed in state registration offices. Statistical information is compiled in a national database through the Vital Statistics Cooperative Program of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics. Causes of death are processed in accordance with the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision.


In 2012, a total of 2,543,279 deaths were reported in the United States. The age-adjusted death rate was 732.8 deaths per 100,000 U.S. standard population, a decrease of 1.1% from the 2011 rate and a record low figure. Life expectancy at birth rose 0.1 year, from 78.7 years in 2011 to a record high of 78.8 in 2012. Age-specific death rates decreased in 2012 from 2011 for age groups 5-14, 15-24, 45-54, 65-74, 75-84, and 85 and over. Age-specific death rates increased only for age group 55-64. The leading causes of death in 2012 remained the same as in 2011. The infant mortality rate of 5.98 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2012 was a historically low value, but it was not significantly different from the 2011 rate.


The decline of the age-adjusted death rate to a record low value for the United States, and the increase in life expectancy to a record high value of 78.8 years, are consistent with long-term trends in mortality.

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