Did you make it through this much of your Monday without having to ponder existential questions of death and doom? If you answer “yes,” you might want to skip this next one. If not, proceed as you wish. A report covered by La Nación this week covering various causes of death in Argentina found that the regularity of suicide for people between the ages of 15 to 34 and HIV for people between 35 to 44 is on the rise.
The figures published in the report were deduced by a study that took place from 2005 to 2015 by the Directorate of Statistics and Health Information. For the general population of Argentina, according to the study, the most common cause of death during the group’s window of research was heart failure followed by pneumonia and influenza.
Argentine death rates in relation to pneumonia and influenza fall in line with many other parts of the West, but there is an uptick in deaths among young health people in the country that has many concerned. Alberto Crescenti, the man in charge of Buenos Aires Emergency Medical Care system (SAME), commented that the carelessness of young Argentines has started to impact the causes of death for their age cohort. “They talk on cell phones, they do not respect maximum speeds or drive with alcohol in their blood. Despite all the campaigns that are done, Argentines are very unlikely to respect the rules,” he said in an interview with La Nación.
While the study’s statistics regarding youthful negligence are harrowing, the prominence of suicide for individuals between 15 and 34 is yet another cause for concern. It has been estimated that nearly 3,000 Argentines died by suicide in the past year, half of whom were under 35. To emphasize the importance — and worsening nature of suicide in Argentina — the Ministry of Health launched a nationwide framework for suicide prevention earlier this year.
Horacio Vommaro, the Director of Psychiatry and Mental Health at the Institute of Neuroscience Buenos Aires, said suicide prevention begins with trying to digest a variety of factors that lead to risk of suicide.
“It is important to assess the severity and likelihood of recurrence by considering different factors [including] severity of suicidal intent, the severity of the suicide or self harm attempt, personal and/or family history of suicide, and socio-cultural factors,” Vommaro stressed that if researchers want to be able to seriously a future with reduced rates of suicide, analysts and suicide information natures must be used to their utmost potential.
In regard to death rates for people with HIV, the age group most affected in between 25 and 44 years old. In fact, the study found that 33 percept of all HIV related deaths occurred in people who were between 25 and 44 years old in 2015. In the last 11 years in Argentina, 15,541 citizens lost their lives as a result of HIV.
Though mortality rates for HIV are high and have been largely consistent under the purview of the study, public health experts are optimistic about being able to reduce instances of HIV-related mortality. Indeed, Marcelo Bases, a doctor who specializes in HIV-AIDS care in Buenos Aires, concurs that “the HIV infection can be controlled. It can be considered a chronic disease, as long as the patient receives the appropriate therapy and complies with the medical indications,” he said.
On the topic of cancer, the vulnerability of the average Argentine still appears to be firmly tied to factors like smoking and diet. Lung cancer has been found to be the most common in populations where smoking is very popular. The prominence of colon cancer has been found to be correlated to the excessive consumption of meat and alcohol in multiple studies.