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Respiratory Illness Deaths Drop Sharply in U.K. Kids

England, Wales see dramatic decline in mortality from respiratory illnesses over past three decades

TUESDAY, Dec. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Since the late 1960s, deaths from respiratory illnesses in children aged 1 to 6 years have fallen from 8.6 per 100,000 to 1.3 per 100,000 in England and Wales, according to a report in the December issue of Thorax.

Jayachandran R. Panickar, M.D., and colleagues at the Royal Liverpool Children's Hospital NHS Trust obtained data from the Office for National Statistics. They found that overall mortality among children aged 1 to 16 years fell from 49.9 deaths per 100,000 children in 1968 to 16.3 deaths per 100,000 children in 2000.

All-cause mortality in infants aged 28 to 364 days fell from 592.8 per 100,000 in 1968 to 176 per 100,000 children in 2000. Deaths from respiratory illness fell from 280 to 22.8 per 100,000 during the same time period.

Overall, respiratory illness caused 30.9% of all deaths in children aged 28 days to 16 years in 1968, but dropped to 9.9% in 2000.

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