(FiveNation.com)- The pandemic has had a lot of ill effects on the American people, but a new surprising effect was revealed recently.
Oxford University published a study on Monday that showed the average life expectancy of men in America decreased by a full two years during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Relative to back in 2019, the life expectancy for American men dropped 2.2 years, according to a report by Reuters. That was the largest decrease in life expectancy among any of the groups the study observed.
There were 29 countries the study took a look at, and the average life expectancy dropped by more than six months compared to what the numbers were in 2019 for 22 of the countries. Many countries in Europe in addition to the U.S. were examined as part of the study.
Last year saw the biggest decrease in life expectancy since World War II. In all, the average life expectancy went down in 27 out of the 29 countries that were part of the study.
According to Oxford, the majority of these decreases in life expectancy could be directly attributed to the coronavirus. Across the world, there have been 4.7 million people who have died as a result of COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic, the World Health Organization has said.
The co-lead author of the study, Ridhi Kashyap, commented:
“The fact that our results highlight such a large impact that is directly attributable to COVID-19 shows how devastating a shock it has been for many countries.”
The decrease in life expectancy that were observed in the study dropped much more across the world for men than for women. In 15 of the countries that were studied, the average life expectancy dropped by more than a year for men. Women saw a decrease in life expectancy of that rate in 11 countries.
Reuters reported that over the last five to six years, there was a lot of progress on life expectancy that was made across the world. That was quickly rolled back, though, during the pandemic.
In the United States specifically, the mortality rate increased the most in individuals who were working age and less than 60 years old, Reuters said. The exact opposite scenario was observed in Europe, though. There, people who are 60 years old or older contributed mainly to the increase in mortality rates.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had announced back in July that the overall life expectancy in the United States had decreased by one-and-a-half years in 2020.
The CDC study found that in 2019, the average life expectancy was 78.8 years for Americans. That number dropped to 77.3 years last year, and a major reason for that was the COVID-19 pandemic.
The United States — as is the rest of the world — is certainly hoping that the pandemic will end soon, and that there will be yet another rebound in life expectancy when it does.