Trends of Cardiovascular Disease Mortality in Relation to Population Aging in Greece (1956 - 2015)
Natasa Kollia1, Alexandra Tragaki2, Aristomenis I. Syngelakis3, Demosthenes Panagiotakos1, 4, 5, 6, *
1 Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, School of Health Science and Education, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece
2 Department of Geography, School of Environment, Geography and Applied Economics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece
3 School of Social Sciences, Hellenic Open University, Patras, Greece
4 Faculty of Health, University of Canberra, Bruce, Australia
5 School of Allied Health, College of Science, Health and Engineering, LA TROBE University, Melbourne, Australia
6 Department of Kinesiology & Health RUTGERS, School of Arts & Life Sciences, The State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick, NJ, USA
Demographic dynamics and decreasing trends in mortality from chronic diseases are major contributors to the phenomenon of population aging. The purpose of the present study was to examine the association between cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality and demographic indicators, in Greece the past 60 years.
Life Expectancy at birth (LE), population age structure, fertility rates (TFR) and all-cause, CVD mortality rates were retrieved (data provided by the Hellenic Statistical Authority, 1956-2015). In order to test the research hypothesis time-series analysis was conducted.
Increasing trends in LE and in the older age (>65 or >80 years) groups’ share and declining trends in TFR were recorded. CVD mortality, after an upward course, showed decreasing trends during 1988–2009, accounting for the 96% and 97% increment in LE in men and women respectively. However, newer records (2010-2015) show a new upward trend. The declining trends in TFR were highly associated with the shifts towards the upper part of the population age pyramid.
Population aging is a historically unprecedented event that cannot be avoided, deterred or alleviated. Its negative effects act cumulatively with the recent increases in cardiovascular mortality, especially in the light of the ongoing economic crisis which is expected to further exacerbate the existing contrasts. A possible way to successfully cope with the new demographic realities is to unlock an, up till now largely overlooked, opportunity named “healthy aging”.
Keywords: Population aging, Cardiovascular disease, Mortality, Life expectancy, Fertility, Demographic changes.
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* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, School of Health Science and Education, Harokopio University, Athens, 17671, Greece; Tel: +30 210-9549332; E-mail: email@example.com