Mortality rates jump for children and teens

The U.S. mortality rate for people ages 1 to 19 climbed by 10.7% from 2019 to 2020 and by 8.4% from 2020 to 2021, a study found. Published this week in JAMA Network, the increase ─ the largest in decades ─ largely was due to injury-related deaths. The researchers believed the pandemic could have contributed to already rising suicide and homicide rates. Homicides among 10- to 19-year-olds rose by nearly 40% from 2020 to 2021, while drug overdose deaths increased by 113.5%. Males comprised most of the increase in injury-related deaths in 2020. Black individuals comprised almost two-thirds of the homicide deaths, and American Indian and Alaska Native youth ages 10 to 19 were twice as likely to commit suicide as white youth. (The Hill article, 3/14/23)