News USA COVID-19 was the fourth leading cause of death in the US in...

COVID-19 was the fourth leading cause of death in the US in 2022

The death toll in the United States fell last year and COVID-19 fell to the fourth leading cause of death in the country, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported Thursday.

Deaths from coronavirus rank below those from heart disease, cancer and injuries such as drug overdoses, motor vehicle deaths and shootings. In 2020 and 2021, only heart disease and cancer were ahead of the coronavirus.

Deaths in the United States generally increase from year to year, in part because the population is growing. The pandemic accelerated that trend, making 2021 the deadliest year in the country’s history, with more than 3.4 million deaths. However, 2022 saw the first drop in deaths since 2009.

The count for 2022 was about 3.3 million, a 5% decrease from 2021, but still much higher than in pre-pandemic years. The CDC cautioned that last year’s numbers are preliminary and may change slightly upon further analysis.

Death rates associated with the coronavirus have fallen for nearly all Americans. Last year, the virus was considered the underlying cause of some 187,000 deaths in the United States, representing 6% of deaths. The highest death rates from COVID-19 were in the South and an adjacent region stretching west to Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico, according to CDC data.

Death rates from heart disease and cancer increased during the pandemic, according to the CDC. The cancer death rate had been on the decline for 20 years before the COVID-19 pandemic.

The CDC report indicated a slight decrease in the number of injury deaths last year, falling to about 218,000 from 219,500 the year before. That would come as a surprise, given recent trends in rising drug overdose and gunshot deaths.

CDC officials said that number could rise. Data on death certificates for injury deaths tend to take longer to obtain as many involve police investigations.

Source: VOA Espanol



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