U.S. life spans "falling significantly behind those in similarly wealthy European countries"

A paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research reports that Americans die earlier than Europeans in every age group.

From The Atlantic:

Average life expectancy surged above 80 years old in just about every Western European country in the 2010s, including Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, Germany, the U.K., Denmark, and Switzerland. In the U.S., by contrast, the average life span has never exceeded 79—and now it's just taken a historic tumble.

Why do Americans die earlier than Europeans?

For one thing, in Europe, rich people and poor people have "shockingly similar death rates. "Health improvements among infants, children, and youth have been disseminated within European countries in a way that includes even the poorest areas," say the paper's authors. But in the United States, "which has the highest poverty and inequality of just about any country in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, poor people are much more likely to die than wealthy people.

And for another, the health system is so bad in the U.S. compared to Europe that "Europeans in extremely impoverished areas seem to live longer than Black or white Americans in the richest 10 percent of counties."

Photo by  Eugene Lower  on  Scopio