After several years of steady upside path, the life expectancy in the European Union fell in 2015, according to a report by the Britain’s Office for National Statistics.
While the long lives trajectory looked steady in Japan and the United States, EU countries, led by advanced nations such as Germany, UK, France and Italy, signaled the first drop since 2002.
In England, the mortality rates surged above the average levels in 2015, raising questions about whether lower government spending on health and education had impacted the lengthening lifespans.
Annie Campbell, a senior researcher at ONS, said the drop could be attributed to the aging population and high deaths resulting from flu.
However, he stressed that “for the overall long-term pattern, more research will be needed before we can be sure what’s driving it.”