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From 1982 to 2010, the country's crude death rate (CDR) dropped sharply, fluctuated, and finally slightly declined. There is a big difference in CDR between urban and rural areas. From 1982 to 1990, the CDR in the country and the countryside declined, and the CDR in cities and towns rose. After 1990, the CDR in cities gradually decreased, the CDR in towns first fell and then rose, and the CDR in the countryside steadily increased. The CDR is affected by changes in the age-specific death rate (ASDR) and age structure. This paper decomposes CDR changes into the influence of declines in ASDR and the impact of age structure changes based on 1982, 1990, 2000, and 2010 census data. The decline in ASDR reduces the CDR, and the aging population increases the CDR (including cities, towns, and the countryside). At the same time, decomposing the difference between the countryside and cities (or the countryside and towns) CDRs found that after 1990, the influence of ASDR differences and age structure differences increased with time. Our results revealed a more significant effect of ASDR differences. The combined effect of two factors (ASDR and age structure) makes the 0, 1-14, 15-64 age groups reduce the CDR, and the 65+ age group increases the CDR. In addition, the 0-year-old group has a not negligible impact on the changes in CDR, although it accounts for a small proportion of the total population. The influence of ASDR and age structure differs over time (1982 to 1990, 1990 to 2000, and 2000 to 2010) and across regions (cities, towns, the countryside). Considering the slow decline in ASDR and the accelerated aging population, we can infer that the CDR in 2020 will stabilize or even rise slightly instead of dropping significantly (compared with the CDR in 2010). This study provides a basis for the formulation of relevant public health policies. © 2022. The Author(s).


Fan Xiao, Li Mei, Quanbao Jiang. Urban-rural differences in China's crude death rate changes. BMC public health. 2022 Feb 25;22(1):399

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PMID: 35216580

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