Mortality by Causes of Death
The study of mortality is a keystone of actuarial activity. Mortality studies identify and compare patterns and trends in historical data, which may change for many reasons, with the objective of projecting these into the future. This paper discusses mortality differences by causes of death (CODs). As mortality by each COD can exhibit different patterns from other CODs and from the mortality pattern of the total population, a detailed study of mortality by COD enables a deeper understanding of overall patterns, and can therefore guide actuaries and decision-makers more reliably.
Mainly using data from 1950 until recent years, mortality data by COD, country, gender and time was taken from two major sources that effectively adhere to the International Classification of Diseases Version 10 (ICD-10): the Human Cause-of-Death Database with data from 16 countries, and the Cause of Death section of the Human Mortality Database with data from 8 countries.
The paper attempts to provide a comprehensive observation of mortality by COD, drawn from these two databases. The CODs have been re-grouped in order to make the information from the two databases more consistent, and also to point out CODs that may be of interest in mortality projections. The paper discusses a number of topics for further development and consideration and gives some indication of the directions which could be taken.