- Overall mortality in the U.S., year-to-date, is significantly down in 2020 relative to previous years.
- At this point in the calendar year, there have been: 35,000 fewer deaths than in 2019, 67,000 fewer than in 2018, and 40,000 fewer than in 2017.
- The data are from the Center for Disease Control’s National Center for Health Statistics Mortality Surveillance System.
To date in 2020, the overall rate of mortality (i.e., death for any reason) in the U.S. has decreased relative to this point in previous years. Arriving as concerns abound about COVID-19’s impact on mortality, this data does not document specific causes of death. The CDC’s data on causes of death typically is released with a lengthier lag than this particular set of near real-time data. And deaths from specific causes may increase even as the aggregate number decreases. Nonetheless, the data are clear on at least this much about the United States: its rate of death as a whole is down so far in 2020 relative to previous years. We will be exploring reasons for this anomaly in future postings.