2016 deaths continue upward trend — PSA

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REPORTED DEATHS reached a 10-year high of 582,183 in 2016, up by 21,578 or 3.8% from the previous year’s 560,605, according to data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) released Monday.

This is equivalent to a crude death rate of 5.6, or about six deaths per thousand people in the population, and resulted in an average of 1,591 deaths per day, 66 per hour, or one per minute.

“The reason for the increase may have been due to a slight increase in registration of deaths,” PSA said of the latest figure, which accords with the “increasing trend” in deaths in the country since 2006.

The top three regions in terms of number of deaths by usual residence were in Luzon, PSA noted, with Region IV-A (Calabarzon) with 82,764 deaths or 14.2%; followed by NCR with 76,839 or 13.2%; and Region II (Central Luzon) with 68,757 or 11.8%.

The regions cited are known to be among the leading drivers of the economy, wherein death also counts as an industry by itself.

“(T)he combined share of these three regions was 39.2% of the total deaths,” PSA said, noting further their higher infant deaths above the other regions (Region IV-A with 3,727 deaths or 17%; NCR with 3,687 or 16.9%; and Region III with 2,480 or 11.3%).

“On the other hand, the three regions which had the least number of deaths were ARMM (3,236 or 0.6%), CAR (8,329 or 1.4%) and Caraga (14,939 or 2.6%). These numbers accounted for only 4.6% of the total deaths in the country. This was about nine times lower than the combined deaths in Calabarzon, NCR and Central Luzon,” PSA said.

ARMM (209 or 1%), CAR (250 or 1.1%) and Caraga (345 or 1.6%) also had the least number of registered infant deaths.

In terms of maternal death (the death of a woman while pregnant or within 42 days of termination of pregnancy from any cause related to or aggravated by the pregnancy or its management but not from accidental or incidental causes), there were 1,483 registered maternal deaths in the country in 2016. Calabarzon recorded the biggest number of maternal deaths with 213 or 14.3% of the total, followed by Central Visayas with 201 or 13.6%, and NCR with 159 or 10.7%. On the other hand, ARMM recorded the least number of maternal deaths with 11 or 0.7%.

Almost six out of ten deaths — or 342,705 out of the 582,183 — were unattended by physicians or any medical personnel.

“Among all regions, only NCR had greater number of medically attended deaths (42,045 or 7.2%) than unattended deaths (34,669 or 6%). It could mean that NCR has better access to health facilities,” PSA said, adding:

“On the other hand, the top three regions which had the most number of unattended deaths were Region IV-A (48,507 or 8.3%), Region III (42,832 or 7.4%) and ironically, NCR (34,669 or 6.0%).”

By gender, more number of male deaths occurred at less than one year old with 12,566 or 3.8% compared to female deaths of only 9,308 or 3.8% of the total. “The same observation can be seen across ages. This is an indication that women live longer than men,” PSA said.

Ischaemic heart disease registered as the top leading cause of death with 74,134 or 12.7% of the total. Second was neoplasms or commonly known as cancer with 60,470 or 10.4%, followed by pneumonia with 57,809 or 9.9% for both sexes.

Among males, ischaemic heart diseases was the top leading cause of death with 44,472 or 13.3%, followed by cerebrovascular diseases (31,675 or 9.5%), then neoplasms (29,516 or 8.8%).

For females, the top cause of death was neoplasm or “cancer” with 30,954 or 12.5%, followed by ischaemic heart diseases with 29,662 or 12%, then pneumonia with 28,816 or 11.6% of the total.

It was also observed that assault with 13,662 or 4.1% of the total was included in the top 10 leading causes of death.

PSA further noted that the month of October recorded the highest number of deaths with 52,357 or 9% while February had the least number with 43,931 or 7.5% of the total deaths.

Apart from October (106.2), September (108.4), August (104.5) and November (100.6) were the other months that exceeded the national daily index value of 100.0. “This means that the number of daily average occurrence of deaths during these months (is) greater than the whole year’s daily average occurrence,” PSA said.

“Data on deaths presented in this release were obtained from the Certificates of Death (Municipal Form No. 103) that were registered at the Office of the City/Municipal Civil Registrars all throughout the country and forwarded to the Philippine Statistics Authority,” the agency said. “Information presented includes registered deaths which occurred from January to December 2016. Figures presented are not adjusted for under-registration.” — with Dane Angelo M. Enerio