Mortality in Kentucky
- Kentucky Population: 4,467,673 (26th highest)
- Population Density: 113.37 per square mile (22nd most dense)
- Median Age: 39.2 (21st oldest)
- Deaths Per Year: 48,707
- Annual Deaths Per 100,000: 1,090
- Life Expectancy at Birth: 75.3
- Fertility Rate (births per 1,000 women age 15-44): 62.6 (14th highest rate)
Leading Causes of Death in Kentucky
|Cause of Death||Deaths Per Year||Deaths Per 100,000||National Rank|
|Chronic Lower Respiratory Diseases (e.g., emphysema, chronic bronchitis, asthma)
|Accidents (includes vehicle accidents)
|Kidney Disease (nephritis, nephrosis, nephrotic syndrome)
|Liver Disease / Cirrhosis
|Pneumonia + Flu
With a rate of 1,090.2 deaths per year, Kentucky has the 4th highest mortality rate among U.S. states (behind West Virginia, Alabama, and Maine). Adjusted for age, Kentucky’s mortality rate is 3rd highest (behind West Virginia and Mississippi). Kentucky’s average life expectancy of 75.3 years is 4th
Kentucky has the nation’s 14th highest fertility rate, and its 2019 infant mortality rate was 16th Nonetheless, Kentucky’s 3% rate of population growth from 2010 to 2019 was less than half the overall national rate.
Kentucky is among the ten states with the highest rates of most major health-related causes of death—including heart disease (9th), chronic respiratory illnesses (2nd), stroke (5th), and diabetes (4th). Kentucky’s rate of hypertension deaths was the nation’s 15th lowest (tied with Hawaii), at 7.1 per 100,000.
For these reasons and more, we here at IBUSA will typically try to help applicants from Kentucky 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.
Homicides, Suicides and Firearms
With 5.9 homicides per 100,000 population, Kentucky is tied with Arizona and Texas for 21st highest rate. For all violent crime, Kentucky is the 7th best-rated state in the country. For all firearm-related deaths, Kentucky is 17th highest, with 14.9 deaths per 100,000.
Kentucky’s suicide rate is 22nd highest among U.S. states, and Kentucky has the nation’s 7th highest rate of drug-overdose deaths.
Kentucky’s COVID-19 death rate for 2020 was 75 per 100,000—which was 20th lowest among U.S. states. Through August, 2021, Kentucky’s COVID death rate was 21st lowest, at 170 per 100,000.
U.S. Dept of Ag., Economic Research Service, https://data.ers.usda.gov/reports.aspx?ID=17827 (citing U.S. Census Bureau, 2019).
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).
CDC, Natl. Center for Health Statistics, Provisional Death Rates for COVID-19 (2020).
New York Times, Coronavirus in the U.S.: Latest Map and Case Count (Aug. 24, 2021).
CDC, State Tobacco Activities Tracking and Evaluation System, Map of Current Cigarette Use Among Adults (2018).
Statista, Percentage of Adults with Obesity in the United States as of 2019 (2019).
United Health Foundation, America’s Health Rankings, 2020 Annual Report: Kentucky.