Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health

, Volume 21, Issue 2, pp 237–245 | Cite as

Parsing the Paradox: Hispanic Mortality in the US by Detailed Cause of Death

  • Jill Anne McDonaldEmail author
  • Leonard Joseph Paulozzi
Original Paper


US Hispanics are a disadvantaged population that paradoxically has lower mortality rates than non-Hispanic whites. We conducted a descriptive analysis of age-adjusted mortality rates for 113 causes of death for US Hispanics (USH) and US non-Hispanic whites (USNHW) during 1999–2015. All-cause, age-adjusted mortality rates per 100,000 were: 581.1 USH and 788.8 USNHW. Lower Hispanic mortality from cancer, heart disease, and respiratory disease accounted for almost all the all-cause mortality gap. USH rates were higher than USNHW rates for cancers of the stomach, liver, and cervix; diabetes mellitus; liver disease; and homicide. Behavioural factors such as less smoking among USH probably drive their lower rates for the major chronic diseases. Social disadvantages contribute to elevated risk for certain cancers, diabetes, and homicide. Efforts to improve Hispanic well-being in the US should remedy the social disadvantages while preserving the health advantages the population enjoys.


Mortality Hispanic Disparity Ethnicity Neoplasm 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Public Health Sciences, College of Health and Social ServicesNew Mexico State UniversityLas CrucesUSA
  2. 2.Independent ConsultantLas CrucesUSA

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