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Iowa Mortality Rates

Mortality in Iowa

  • Iowa Population: 3,155,077 (31st highest)
  • Population Density: 56.64 per square mile (35th most dense)
  • Median Age:  38.6 (20th youngest)
  • Deaths Per Year:  30,367
  • Annual Deaths Per 100,000: 962.2
  • Life Expectancy at Birth:  79.2
  • Fertility Rate (births per 1,000 women age 15-44):  63.4 (9th highest rate)

Leading Causes of Death in Iowa

Cause of Death Deaths Per Year Deaths Per 100,000 National Rank
Heart Disease


7,505 172.9 16th


6,335 150.9 23rd
Chronic Lower Respiratory Diseases (e.g., emphysema, chronic bronchitis, asthma)


1,879 43.8 19th
Accidents (includes vehicle accidents)


1,538 42.3 43rd


1,412 32.1 37th
Alzheimer’s Disease


1,344 29.2 31st


861 20.2 32nd
Pneumonia + Flu


585 13.2 22nd
Kidney Disease (nephritis, nephrosis, nephrotic syndrome)


430 10.1 35th


368 9 26th
Liver Disease / Cirrhosis


357 9.5 39th


528 16.7 21st
Drug Overdose


352 11.5 46th


80 2.7 43rd

Population Statistics

Iowa’s median age of 38.6 years ties New Mexico and Arkansas for 20th Even so, Iowa’s median age is a little higher than the U.S. median age of 38.1 years.

Iowa’s mortality rate is nearly 100 deaths per 100,000 higher than the overall U.S. rate of 869.7. Iowa’s age-adjusted mortality rate is only about 2% above the national age-adjusted mortality rate. At 79.2 years, Iowa’s life expectancy is the nation’s 16th

At 63.4, Iowa’s fertility rate ties Oklahoma for 9th However, Iowa’s 3.6% rate of population growth from 2010 to 2019 was more than one-third below the overall U.S. rate.

Iowa’s infant mortality rate of 5.03 deaths per 1,000 live births is the nation’s 17th

For these reasons and more, we here at IBUSA will typically try to help applicants from Iowa first qualify  for a no medical exam term life insurance  when possible, and for those that won’t be able to qualify for such a policy, fully underwritten life insurance policies and guaranteed issue life insurance policies may still be an option.

Homicide, Suicide and Fireamrs

With only 2.7 homicides per 100,000 population, Iowa has the nation’s 8th lowest homicide rate. Iowa has the 21st highest suicide rate and is 10th lowest for all firearm-related mortality.

Accidental Deaths

Iowa has the nation’s 8th lowest rate of accidental deaths. Iowa’s 10.1 accidental poisonings per 100,000 is lower than all but Nebraska and South Dakota. At 11.5 deaths per 100,000 population, Iowa’s drug-overdose rate is the nation’s 5th  

Despite these low numbers,  we’ll often recommend that our clients at least consider purchasing an additional accidental death policy as a way to supplement any traditional life insurance coverage they may already have.


Iowa is the 2nd most dangerous state in the Midwest for workers (tied with Indiana, at 4.7 deaths per 100,000 workers).


Through August, 2021, Iowa’s 197 COVID-19 deaths per 100,000 is about 3% above the overall COVID death rate nationally.

Random Fact

Iowa is rated the 5th healthiest state for social and economic factors affecting health.


U.S. Dept of Ag., Economic Research Service, https://data.ers.usda.gov/reports.aspx?ID=17827 (citing U.S. Census Bureau, 2019).

Statista, Population Density in the U.S. by Federal States Including District of Columbia in 2020 (2020).

StatsAmerica (Ind. Bus. Research Center), Median Age in 2019.

CDC, Natl. Center for Health Statistics, State & Territorial Data (2018 – 2019).

Kaiser Family Foundation, Number of Deaths per 100,000 Population (2019).

CDC, Natl. Center for Health Statistics, Life Expectancy at Birth by State (2018).

CDC, Natl. Center for Health Statistics, Fertility Rates by State (2019).

CDC, Natl. Center for Health Statistics, Stats of the States (2021).

New York Times, Coronavirus in the U.S.: Latest Map and Case Count (Aug. 24, 2021).

Natl. Safety Council, State Overview Table: 2019 (preventable-injury-related death rates per 100,000 population by state of residence, United States, 2019).

Natl. Safety Council, Work Deaths by State (2019).

United Health Foundation, America’s Health Rankings, 2020 Annual Report: Iowa.

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