Adolescent Mortality in South Africa: An Analysis of Unnatural Causes of Deaths by Sex, 2006- 2009

Nicole De Wet, University of the Witwatersrand
Genevieve Dean, University of the Witwatersrand

Adolescence is a time when negative lifestyle and behavioural practices (smoking, drug- abuse, violence) that follow this cohort into adulthood is learned. With this in mind, this paper aims to examine the different levels of male and female adolescent mortality due to 5 specific unnatural causes of death. Data from the South African death registry is analysed for the years 2006- 2009. Both sexes are studied. Cause-specific mortality rates, proportional mortality ratios and life table techniques are used. Results show that mortality from unnatural causes of death have fluctuated over the years. In addition, adolescent females are dying from ‘events of undetermined intent’, ‘transport accidents’ and ‘self- harm’ causes more than males. The selected causes of death are contributing up to 27% of all adolescent male mortality and almost 12% of all female mortality in 2009. Finally years of potential life lost due to ‘assault’ are increasing among adolescent females.

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Presented in Poster Session 7