Life expectancy at birth in Canada

This article was last updated on June 18, 2022

Life expectancy at birth in Canada reached 80.7 years for the three-year period between 2005 and 2007, up from the average of 80.5 between 2004 and 2006, and 78.4 a decade earlier between 1995 and 1997.

Gains during the past decade were stronger among men. Their life expectancy at birth rose by 2.9 years to 78.3 in 2005-2007, while among women it increased by 1.8 years to 83.0.

The gap between the sexes has been closing for several years.

Life expectancy among seniors at the age of 65 has also been on an upward trend for several years.

On average, a 65-year-old man could expect to live an additional 18.1 years in 2005-2007, an increase of 2.0 years from the previous decade. A 65-year-old woman could expect to live an additional 21.3 years, up by 1.3 years.

Gains in life expectancy among seniors during the past decade have accounted for about 70% of the increase in life expectancy at birth.

Table 1 Life expectancy at birth and at age 65 by sex, Canada

Provincially, life expectancy at birth in British Columbia was 81.2 years in 2005-2007, highest among the provinces, followed by Ontario at 81.0 years. Life expectancy at birth in Quebec was at the national average.

Largest increase in deaths in 14 years
The number of deaths registered in Canada in 2007 recorded its largest increase since 1993, continuing a long-term upward trend resulting from a growing and aging population.

In 2007, 235,217 people died in Canada, up 7,138 or 3.1% from 2006.

Both male and female deaths rose, but the increase was slightly larger among women, 3.2% compared with 3.1% for men.

Infant mortality rate up slightly in 2007
The infant mortality rate rose from 5.0 infant deaths per 1,000 live births in 2006 to 5.1 in 2007.

In general, the infant mortality rate has been declining since 1982, when the rate was at 9.1 infant deaths per 1,000 live births.

Among boys, the infant mortality rate increased from 5.4 in 2006 to 5.5 infant deaths per 1,000 live births in 2007. Among girls, the rate went up from 4.6 to 4.7 during the same period.

Crude death rate up, standardized rate unchanged
The crude death rate in Canada rose from 7.0 deaths per 1,000 population in 2006 to 7.1 in 2007.

However, when differences in age structure of the population were taken into account, the age-standardized death rate remained unchanged.

In 2007, Nunavut had the highest standardized death rate in Canada, followed by the other two territories. The lowest standardized rate occurred in British Columbia, followed by Ontario, Quebec and Alberta.

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