Mortality Deceleration Revisited: Using the LAR Approach

Natalia S. Gavrilova, University of Chicago
Leonid A. Gavrilov, University of Chicago

The growing number of persons living beyond age 80 underscores the need for accurate measurement of mortality at advanced ages for population forecasting. One approach to study mortality patterns at advanced ages is based on Life table Aging Rate (LAR) after age 80. If mortality decelerates at older ages then the LAR values should decline with age rather than remain unchanged as in the case of Gompertz law. The LAR approach was applied to age-specific death rates for Canada, France, Sweden and the United States available in HMD. It was found that for all studied 24 single-year birth cohorts LAR does not change significantly with age in the age interval 80-100 years suggesting the validity of Gompertz law. Simulation study demonstrated that the apparent decline of LAR after age 80 found in earlier studies may be related to biased estimates of mortality rates measured in too wide 5-year age interval.

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Presented in Session 128: Understanding Old-Age Mortality