Tuberculosis leading cause of death in 2015

MARCH 1, 2017
Tuberculosis leading cause of death in 2015

Tuberculosis remains the leading underlying natural cause of death in 2015, Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) said on Tuesday.

According to Stats SA, the total number of people who died in 2015 was 460 236.

“Once again tuberculosis was the leading underlying natural cause of death in 2015, accounting for 7.2% deaths, followed by diabetes mellitus with 5.4% deaths,” said Stats SA.

Releasing the Mortality and Causes of Death in South Africa 2015, Stats SA said while tuberculosis has maintained its position as the number one leading underlying natural cause of death, proportions over time have been declining.

This as proportions for diabetes mellitus, hypertensive diseases, other viral diseases and chronic lower respiratory diseases have been increasing, noted the report that is based on data collected by the Department of Home Affairs through the death registration system.

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

According to the report, there were more male deaths than female deaths in 2015 from infancy until the age 65–69, after which there were more female than male deaths.

Over half (55.5%) of deaths were attributed to the group of non-communicable diseases (also known as chronic diseases that are not passed from person to person).

Communicable diseases (an infectious disease transmissible) accounted for 33.4% of deaths, while injuries were responsible for 11.1% of deaths.

“The trend has been the same since 2009, whereby more deaths were due to non-communicable diseases than the other two groups. As can be expected, deaths due to non-natural causes were highest amongst the youth, with young males being the highest victims.”

The leading underlying natural cause of death amongst males was tuberculosis, responsible for 8.3% deaths, while among females diabetes mellitus was the first leading underlying natural cause of death responsible for 7.1% deaths.

Tuberculosis was the third leading underlying natural cause for females, while diabetes mellitus was the sixth leading underlying natural cause of death amongst males. The highest proportion of deaths due to tuberculosis was recorded in KwaZulu-Natal with 9.1% deaths in the province, followed by Eastern Cape with 8.6% deaths.

The Western Cape (5.3%) had the lowest proportion of deaths due to tuberculosis. For the Western Cape, the second leading underlying cause of death was HIV disease (6.1%) whereas for Gauteng and Limpopo, tuberculosis was the second leading underlying cause of death accounting for 5.5% and 6.6% deaths.

The other provinces where HIV disease was the second leading underlying cause of death was Eastern Cape (6%) and Northern Cape (6.4%), while it was the third leading underlying cause of death in KwaZulu-Natal (6.1%) and Free State (5.2%).

SAnews.gov.za