The state of Missouri is part of a national trend that has seen a decrease in life expectancy, even though it is lower than the U. S. average. Currently, the average life expectancy in the state is 74.6 years, three years less than it was a decade ago.
Various factors are contributing to the decline in life expectancy in Missouri and across the country. The most recent data from the Missouri Department of Health and Services for the Elderly reveals that life expectancy in the state has dropped to its lowest level in four decades due to the coronavirus pandemic. The impact of COVID-19 on life expectancy in Missouri is particularly concerning, as it has been one of the states hardest hit by the virus. The number of deaths due to COVID-19 in Missouri has risen dramatically since the start of the pandemic, with more than 8,000 deaths reported as of April 2021. This has had a significant impact on life expectancy in the state, as those who have died from COVID-19 are typically younger than those who die from other causes.
In addition to the impact of COVID-19, other factors such as poverty, lack of access to healthcare, and poor health habits are also contributing to declining life expectancy in Missouri. Poverty is a major factor, as those living in poverty are more likely to suffer from chronic health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease, which can lead to an earlier death. Additionally, those living in poverty often lack access to quality healthcare and preventive care, which can lead to an increased risk of illness and death. Finally, poor health habits such as smoking and lack of exercise can also contribute to an earlier death.
The decline in life expectancy in Missouri is concerning, but there are steps that can be taken to improve it. Increasing access to quality healthcare and preventive care is essential for improving life expectancy in the state. Additionally, promoting healthy lifestyle habits such as eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly can help reduce the risk of chronic health conditions and improve overall health. Finally, reducing poverty levels can help improve access to healthcare and reduce health disparities.