Medical Examiner Mortality Data
About These Data
Mortality data tell us the average number of years of life a person is expected live. This number can vary depending on one’s race, ethnicity, sex and other factors. When there are drastic differences in the average age of death between groups, it is a sign there are inequities in health. This is a very long-term health outcome and improving this number may take years after a program of policy is implemented to see a positive effect.
Why These Data Are Important
Average age of death has been used as a key metric in multiple health frameworks for years. Unfortunately, the average age of death for Black residents of Milwaukee County has been at least 10 years or more lower than White residents for over a decade. As of 2020, White residents’ average age of death was 74.7 years compared to 62.0 for Black residents, a gap of 12.7 years. This metric represents perhaps the starkest indicator of the social and health inequities that exist in our county. The reduction of this gap is one of the key performance targets for the Office of the County Executive.
What We Are Doing About It
Since making history as the first government in the nation to declare racism a public health crisis in 2019, Milwaukee County has committed to reevaluating all of its services to align to a new strategic plan. The vision of this plan is: By achieving racial equity, Milwaukee is the healthiest county in Wisconsin. To this end, the County is realigning its services – what it does, where it does it and how it does it – to meet the needs of Milwaukee County’s residents most impacted by health disparities.