Tuberculosis still leading cause of death, says Stats SA

Tuberculosis still leading cause of death, says Stats SA

A doctor examines a patient with Tuberculosis. Picture: Gallo Images

Tuberculosis accounted for 7.2 percent of all deaths in 2016 followed by diabetes mellitus with 5.4 percent.

Tuberculosis killed more than 33,000 people in 2015, remaining the leading cause of death for many South Africans in the past three years, Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) revealed on Tuesday.

According to the “Mortality and causes of death in South Africa 2015: Findings from death notification”, tuberculosis accounted for 7.2 percent of all deaths last year, and had averaged at least at seven percent each year in 2013, 2014, and in 2015.

Stats SA said TB claimed more lives of men than women – responsible for 8.3 percent deaths of males – while among females diabetes mellitus was the leading underlying natural cause of death, being responsible for 7.1 percent deaths.

Tuberculosis was followed by diabetes mellitus, with 5.4 percent deaths, in second place.

Stats SA said the total number of deaths that occurred in 2015 was 460,236.

The information focused on causes of death that occurred in 2015 and were processed for the period 1 January 2015 to 27 August 2016.

Hypertensive diseases, HIV, influenza and pneumonia, cerebrovascular diseases, and other forms of heart disease were also among the top 10 leading causes of death in 2015.

The highest number of deaths that occurred in 2015 was among those aged 60-64 at 7.8 percent, while the lowest number was observed among those aged 5-9 and 10-14 years.

Overall, there were more male deaths than female in 2015, from infancy until age 65-69, after which there were more female than male deaths.

Over half, or 55.5 percent, of deaths were attributed to the group of non-communicable diseases.

Communicable diseases accounted for 33.4 percent of deaths, while injuries were responsible for 11.1 percent of deaths, the same trend since 2009.

Stats SA said, as could be expected, deaths due to non-natural causes were highest among the youth, with young males being the biggest victims.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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