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Did Life Expectancy Fall Because of the Pandemic?

Globally life expectancy has fallen dramatically, in large part due to the pandemic, reversing years of progress.

Among those suffering the largest losses are Russia(-4.5), India(-3.7), and Mexico(-4). Interestingly, China was able to maintain marginal gains in life expectancy, highlighting the effectiveness of its harsh "zero COVID" policy. The US also saw significant losses, losing 1.9 years of life expectancy. Interestingly, life expectancy losses were not isolated to developing countries and those without access to vaccines. This could be due to a variety of factors, like rural areas being less prone to mass spreading events, and a willingness of more developed countries to forgo COVID restrictions as vaccines have lessened the symptoms for many that do contract the virus.

Of the countries that made gains in life expectancy, none were able to surpass 1 year of gains.

Although the Omicron is generally considered to be less deadly than its Delta counterpart, the new BA.5 variant has been shown to be able to infect even those who had previously contracted COVID. With this in mind, its remains important to be cautious and follow the recommended guidelines by your countries disease prevention body, like the CDC.

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