Sex Differences in Adult Mortality (Age 15-64) in South Africa, 1997-2005: HIV and Other Sources

Barbara A. Anderson, University of Michigan
Heston Phillips, Statistics South Africa

Females have typically had lower death rates than males at every age, except in situations of extreme female deprivation. Recently, in countries such as South Africa with high levels of HIV infection, female mortality has approached and for some age groups surpassed that of males. In 2005, female death rates at age 20-34 exceeded male rates. However even in 1997, female death rates from natural causes, as well as for many detailed causes of death, were higher than male rates at age 15-29, at a time when the effect of HV on mortality was minimal. Using death registration data, this paper examines sex differences in mortality overall and by cause in South Africa 1997-2005 for those age 15-64. It focuses on the role of HIV, both stated and unstated, in the extent and trend in sex differences in mortality.

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Presented in Session 10: Demographic Implications of HIV/AIDS