Mortality in China 1964-2000

Judith Banister, Kenneth Hill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

100 Scopus citations


This paper uses data from censuses and surveys to re-estimate mortality levels and trends in China from the 1960s to 2000. We use the General Growth Balance method to evaluate the completeness of death reporting above the youngest ages in three censuses of the People's Republic of China from 1982 to 2000, concluding that reporting quality is quite high, and revisit the completeness of death recording in the 1973-75 Cancer Epidemiology Survey. Estimates of child mortality from a variety of direct and indirect sources are reviewed, and best estimates arrived at. Our estimates show a spectacular improvement in life expectancy in China: from about 60 years in the period 1964-82 to nearly 70 years in the period 1990-2000, with a further improvement to over 71 years by 2000. We discuss why survival rates continue improving in China despite reduced government involvement in and increasing privatization of health services, with little insurance coverage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-75
Number of pages21
JournalPopulation Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2004


  • Adjusted life tables
  • Adult mortality
  • Child mortality
  • China
  • Completeness of death reporting
  • General Growth Balance method
  • Life expectancy
  • Mortality trends
  • PRC censuses
  • Survival rates

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • History


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