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Why Do More Women Become Centenarians?

The persistence of mortality decline at all ages, particularly at older ages, means that an increasing number of individuals are becoming centenarians and semi-supercentenarians. In a recent study, researchers Graziella Caselli, Marco Battaglini and Giorgia Capacci attempted to show the evolution of the gender gap for cohorts born between 1870 and 1912 who were older than 100 and 105 years.

The researchers used the Istat (Italian National Institute of Statistics) mortality data (Cause of Death Survey and Deaths of Resident Population survey) and the Semi super and Supercentenarians Survey (SSC), that has been conducted by Istat since 2009 to study the characteristics of the evolution of the gender gap. They found that the difference in the survival functions of women and men, which begins at around 60 years of age and continues for all subsequent age groups, has enabled more women to reach the thresholds of 100 and 105 years of age.

They also found that part of the gender gap among centenarians was due to the role of international migration, which certainly prevented a larger number of men than women of the same cohort from becoming centenarians in Italy.

Author(s) of the original publication: 
Writer: 
Isabel Robles Salgado