8. Since 2007, Romania has lost over 43,000 doctors, which has left them with one of the highest infant mortality rates in the EU.
Romania sitting just above Georgia, holds the eighth-highest position in the world with a rate of 13.099 deaths per 1,000. What is the leading cause of death in this country? There are a few: cardiovascular disease, digestive diseases, accidents, and malignant tumors. Also, Romania experiences a high rate of fatalities with injuries, poisonings, and respiratory diseases. There’s another shocking death rate statistic in Romania, and it is sadly their infant mortality rate. It is the highest in the whole of the European Union at eight deaths per 1000. Why is this rate so high even with all the developments in health care?
Well, people assume that it is because of the shortage of doctors who are in Romania. This trend hit the country hard since 2007, and thousands of doctors have left the country to work elsewhere. In total, about 43,000 doctors have left since then. That is all a reflection of socioeconomic inequalities that cause a big deficiency in vital health services. They have a healthcare system with a benefits package. Nevertheless, many of the population is still uninsured and only gets access to very minimal assistance. Romania needs more doctors and a better balance between primary and hospital care.
7. You can’t blame Game of Thrones for Croatia’s high death rate. It’s actually due to 25% of their population smoking.
Croatia’s death rate isn’t high because this is where the fictional world of Games of Thrones was filmed, but actually because of ischemic heart disease, strokes, and lung cancer. They have a mortality rate of 13.17 deaths per 1,000 people landing them position number 7. It’s not surprising that lung cancer is one of their highest causes of death since a considerable amount of Croatian citizens smokes tobacco every single day of their lives; that is a total of 25% of their population! It is much higher than the EU average, which is very concerning. There are also other causes of death in the country due to lifestyle.
That includes obesity. The obesity rates in Croatia are on the rise, and this is most notable in children. The rate has grown by more than 50% since 2001. The lifestyle in Croatia does not lend itself to a healthy upbringing, and this is something that needs to change for them to move out of the 7th position for the highest mortality rates in the world. Despite all of this, their life expectancy isn’t too low and has improved since 2000. It was 74.6 and is now 78.3. Even though this may sound relatively high, it is still three years below the EU’s average.
6. Serbia has one of the oldest populations in Europe, which is a significant contributor to their mortality rate.
This country can be freezing, but people aren’t freezing to death here. They just have one of the oldest populations in Europe! Their death rate is currently 13.194 per 1,000, which means they are in the sixth position. An interesting study was done on Serbia and its mortality rate. It concluded that their mortality was the lowest it had ever been back in 1960. During this time, it was eight or nine deaths per 1,000. However, at the beginning of the 21st century, this all changed; the death rate moved up to 14 deaths per 1,000.
Their aging population plays a significant role in their high death rate, but other conditions are at play. It includes chronic non-communicable diseases and also cardiovascular disease. Serbia is another country that has some poor lifestyle choices and is ranked in the world’s ten countries with the highest smoking rate. Surprisingly, lung cancer isn’t one of their leading causes of death, but smoking can cause many other problems – including cardiovascular disease. Hopefully, soon, they’ll lower their death rate once again and start making healthier lifestyle choices for the remaining population as it becomes younger.
5. Lithuania is in the five countries with the highest medical mortality rate due to ischemic heart diseases and strokes.
Now we are in the top five countries with the highest medical mortality rate in the world. Lithuania takes the number five spot with a death rate of 13.737 deaths per 1,000. According to the World Health Organization, the leading causes of death in Lithuania are ischemic heart diseases and strokes. Their ischemic heart disease death rate is four times the average rate in the rest of the European Union, and their stroke rate is two times as high. Unfortunately, they have a high death rate; Lithuania also has the lowest life expectancy in the EU.
The life expectancy in Lithuania currently sits at 74.8 years. One of the other leading causes of death in Lithuania is their high smoking rate in the country – lung cancer is the third leading cause of death. Their life expectancy rate has been through a roller coaster over the past 70 years. In 1990, they experienced an economic fallout, and there was also loss of life caused by riots and chaos in the country. In 1994 they only had a life expectancy of 68.5 years! Since then, it has somewhat stabilized and should continue to get higher, we hope.
4. Lesotho is struggling with its mortality rate and its very low life expectancy of 56 years.
Lesotho has a mortality rate of 12.144 deaths per 1,000 people. It is almost more concerning than this high number is their life expectancy at birth; it sits at only 56 years old for females and an even lower 52 years for men! The infant mortality rate in Lesotho is also very high at 59 per 1,000 live births. Why are these rates so high and also so low? There are many concerning conditions that affect people in Lesotho, including HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and strokes. There are also high numbers of deaths caused by lower respiratory infections and ischemic heart diseases.
How is the country dealing with COVID-19? Well, they were the last country in Africa to record a case of the virus and have since recorded a very sharp rise in their patients. It was due to workers traveling from South Africa to go home during the Christmas holidays. Their cases are around 4000, and they have a population of 2 million people. Since then, the country has started to increase their testing to ensure that they are doing whatever they can to avoid the virus getting out of control within the kingdom. They have also become stricter with their quarantine procedures.
3. Latvia has a poor health system with low income and education.
Jumping quite a bit up in Latvia with a mortality rate of 14.669 – this is mainly due to their severely underfunded health care system. Despite this, their life expectancy has been improving over the year. However, they are still far behind compared to the rest of the European Union. The greatest mortality is among men, people with low income and low education. It is interesting to see the correlation between low life expectancy and low education. Those with low education have a life expectancy of ten years less than those with a high education level in the country.
What is causing these deaths among those who are poorly educated? They are at risk from lifestyle factors, including smoking, binge drinking, and also obesity. These seem to be a common factor between the countries in the top 10 of mortality rates. Moreover, there needs to be some sort of intervention in these areas. The diseases people are dying of are directly related to their lifestyle choices. Without these risk factors, such as smoking and drinking, they would most likely be living much better and longer lives. With these factors, people are at a much greater risk of cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
2. Ukraine struggles with a failing health care system and working-age men battling with alcohol poisoning.
We’ve entered the top two, and Ukraine has the second-highest mortality rate in the world. Their rate is 15.192 deaths per 1,000 people. Ukraine is experiencing what is known as a “demographic crisis.” It has been labeled this because they have a high mortality rate and a low birth rate. Their health care system also isn’t doing well and is very poorly funded. The country experiences high rates of diseases and conditions, which isn’t good if their health care system isn’t the best. They also have meager vaccination rates, leading to many more illnesses than in countries with high vaccine rates.
So, what are the factors that are contributing to this incredibly high mortality rate? Well, it’s mainly to do with the working-age men in Ukraine. They have high rates of alcohol poisoning and conditions caused by smoking. Just like Lesotho, they also have high rates of HIV/AIDS. They also went through a terrible measles epidemic in June 2019, and they are struggling to recover from that time. Now, being hit by COVID-19, the country is in big trouble, and with a failing health system, it doesn’t seem like they’ll be moving out of the top 10 any time soon.
1. Bulgaria claims the number one spot on this list and has similar death causes to the rest of the countries in Europe.
You might be surprised to learn that Bulgaria is the number one for the world’s highest mortality rates. Their rate sits at 5.433 deaths per 1,000 people. Is there something significant causing this high death rate? Nope, it’s very similar to the cause of death in the rest of the European countries. Their concerns are diseases of the circulatory, digestive and respiratory systems. Another high cause of death in Bulgaria is cancer. Not only do they have a high death rate, but due to this, they are suffering quite an intense population decline.
They had about 9 million people in 2000 and are expected to end up between 2.8 million and 5 million. How has COVID-19 impacted Bulgaria? Well, they’ve had around 360 000 cases of the coronavirus confirmed in the country, and they are doing their very best to test as many people as possible who might have the virus. They are also progressing with their vaccination plan to create herd immunity within the country. So far, experts report that 519,635 doses of the vaccine have been administered. Also, 104,845 people have received their second dose.