INTRODUCTION: In Denmark the life expectancy began to increase in the mid-1990s after many years of stagnation. The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether the increase was independent of educational level. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study is based on data on education and mortality rates during the period 1995-1999 and comprises all deaths of Danes between the ages of 30 and 74. The total and cause-specific, sex-specific and age-specific death rates for each of three educational groups were calculated and standardised by age in order to make comparisons over time and between groups. RESULTS: The age-standardised death rates decreased annually by 2.3% for men and 1.2% for women with a low educational level. The decrease was higher among those with a medium or high level of education, the decrease in death rates being 4.0% for men and 3.5% for women. The development in cancer mortality showed a decline among men and women with a medium educational level and women with a high level, but not among men with a high level of education or men or women with a low educational level. Mortality due to cardiovascular diseases declined in all groups, but less among persons with a low educational level. The mortality rate from chronic obstructive lung disease increased among low-educated persons and among women with a medium level of education; for the other groups changes were not noticeable. CONCLUSION: The overall decline in the mortality rates among Danes during the period 1995-1999 was socially unequally distributed. The smallest decrease was seen among those with a low educational level. In particular, the decline was modest among women with a low educational level.
|Bidragets oversatte titel||Social differences in mortality trends in Denmark|
|Tidsskrift||Ugeskrift for læger|
|Status||Udgivet - 2006|