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Alaska Native Epidemiology Center releases report on leading causes of death for Alaska Native people

September 30, 2016




To continue making progress toward our vision that Alaska Native people are the healthiest people in the world, the Consortium must be aware of the health issues that our people face.

A new report, Alaska Native Mortality Update: 2009-2013, provides information about the ten leading causes of death for Alaska Native people, which are cancer, heart disease, unintentional injuries, suicide, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cerebrovascular disease, chronic liver disease, pneumonia and influenza, diabetes and alcohol abuse.

Reliable information on cause of death is essential to the development of policies and programs for prevention and control of disease and injury. Produced by the Alaska Native Epidemiology Center in collaboration with the State of Alaska’s Bureau of Vital Statistics, this report provides information for health care planners, providers and other professionals throughout Alaska and elsewhere.

Data are provided by age, gender, and Tribal health service region. Additionally, trends over time between 1980 and 2013 are included. Significant findings from the report show:

  • The Alaska Native people all-cause mortality rate, for both genders combined, during the period 2009-2013, was 51 percent higher than the U.S. White rate during the same period.
  • Alaska Native people, both genders combined, had higher rates than U.S. Whites for nine of the ten leading causes of death: cancer, heart disease, unintentional injuries, suicide, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cerebrovascular disease, chronic liver disease, pneumonia and influenza, and alcohol abuse.

Data can be used for health status monitoring, strategic planning, and evaluation to decrease these health disparities. View the full report and more information about the Alaska Native Epidemiology Center at http://anthctoday.org/epicenter/publications/mortality/index.html.


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