- MEASURE DETAIL
Premature Death measures the loss of years of life due to death before age 75 as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Years of Potential Life Lost (YPLL-75). Thus, the death of a 25-year-old would account for 50 years of lost life, while the death of a 60-year-old would account for 15 years. Ranks are based on the most recently available data from the CDC.
Premature death is a measure of mortality that reflects the age of death for persons under 75 years of age. A person who dies very young contributes more towards the overall measure and causes it to increase more than someone who dies closer to 75. Deaths occurring in younger people are more likely to be preventable than those occurring in older people and are indicative of failures in the health care system and/or lifestyle factors. According to 2009 mortality data, cancer, unintentional injury, heart disease, suicide and deaths occurring during the perinatal period are the top five causes of premature death in the United States. Many of these causes of death are preventable through lifestyle modifications. Lung cancer is the largest contributor towards premature cancer deaths and smoking cessation can greatly decrease the risk of lung cancer. Heart disease is tied to several modifiable risk factors such as obesity, diabetes and sedentary lifestyle. A variety of intervention strategies that encourage healthy lifestyles and preventative care can be effective in decreasing premature death.
 CDC/National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC). WISQARS years of potential life lost (YPLL) report, 2009. Atlanta, GA: US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC, NCIPC.
- Number of years of potential life lost prior to age 75 per 100,000 population.
The measures tracked by America's Health Rankings are those actions that can affect the future health of the population. For a state to improve the health of its population, efforts must focus on these measures, these determinants of health.
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Closely Related Measures:
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