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Mortality Patterns by Race and Ethnicity

Oregon, 1989-1995

Introduction | Statistics by Cause of Death


Not all Oregonians enjoy long and healthy lives, but the continuum from good health to poor health is often difficult to define. Death, in contrast, is a clearly defined event and has long been the single most reliable indicator of the health of a population. It is the manifestation of the unique interplay of social, cultural, biological, and economic factors among individuals and groups of individuals.

The following tables will provide the user with detailed death statistics for the racial/ethnic groups with the largest populations. Our goal is to describe the mortality profile for all groups, but because the populations for some groups are small and the deaths few, this is not possible. Four groups (African Americans, Indians, Asians and Pacific Islanders, and Hispanics) had sufficiently large populations to allow the calculation of meaningful statistics. The apparent mortality experience of Oregon's minority populations can be misleading. In all cases, the total crude death rates are lower than for the majority non-Hispanic White population. But there is a paradox. While at first glance non-Hispanic Whites appear to have the least favorable mortality profile, this is a reflection of the different age distributions of the racial/ethnic groups. After controlling for the age distribution differences by calculating age-adjusted death rates, it is clear that African Americans have the least favorable mortality profile.

For each cause of death, three tables are presented that show the number of deaths, crude death rate, age-specific death rates, age-adjusted death rate, comparative mortality figure, years of potential life lost, and years of potential life lost index. For an overview of these various measures, see the Methodology.

Statistics by Cause of Death are presented for:
(Best viewed and printed in 10 pt. fixed font)

All Causes [ data] AIDS [ data]

Alcoholism [ data]

Cancer [ data]
Lung Cancer [ data]

Cerebrovascular Disease [ data]

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (e.g., emphysema, asthma, etc.) [ data]

Diabetes [ data]

Drug Overdoses (intentional and unintentional) [ data]

Heart Disease [ data]

Homicide [ data]

Pneumonia and Influenza [ data]

Suicide [ data]

Unintentional Injuries [ data]
Motor Vehicle Accidents [ data]
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