The leading causes of child death are remarkably similar across the 20 countries. Neonatal causes, principally due to preterm birth, birth trauma, and sepsis, dominate across all countries. Congenital birth defects, especially heart defects, are also among the top five causes of child death in all countries.
Infectious diseases, especially pneumonia and diarrhea, are major child killers in most countries, followed by malaria in seven countries (Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Mozambique, Uganda, Kenya, and Mali). HIV/AIDS remains a leading child killer in Russia, South Africa and Kenya, and congenital syphilis in Brazil and Indonesia. Injuries, especially drowning, choking, and road traffic accidents cause many child deaths in China, USA, and Mexico.
In contrast, among working-age adults, the leading causes of death vary across the 20 countries and between men and women. Among working-age men, injuries are a leading cause of death in all countries, especially road traffic accidents which is among the top five killers of young men in all 20 countries.
Self-harm is a major killer in India, China, Brazil, USA, Russia, Bangladesh, South Africa, and Mexico, while interpersonal violence is a problem in Ethiopia, Brazil, Russia, USA, South Africa, Philippines, Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, Afghanistan, and Mexico. Heart disease, cirrhosis, and/or stroke are leading non-communicable disease killers, while tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS are the leading communicable killers of young men.
Malaria is a leading killer in seven of the 20 countries, (Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Mozambique, Uganda, Kenya, and Mali). Every country except Ethiopia, South Africa, and Tanzania have communicable and non-communicable diseases among the top five causes of early death among young men.
Among working-age women, heart disease is the leading killer in eleven of the 20 countries, followed closely by tuberculosis, breast cancer, and road traffic accidents. Deaths in pregnancy and childbirth remain major killers of young women in nine countries (India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, Tanzania, Mozambique, and Mali) and HIV/AIDs remains a threat in eight countries, all of them in Africa with the exception of Russia. Other leading non-communicable killers of working-age women include stroke, cirrhosis, diabetes, and chronic kidney disease.
Injuries, especially road traffic accidents, self-harm, and interpersonal violence are leading killers of working age women in 13 countries. The six countries where self-harm is a major problem among young women include India, China, USA, Russia, and Bangladesh. Interpersonal violence is a major killer of women in Brazil, South Africa, and Mexico.