According to a study published in the British journal 'Lancet', India has made good progress as the life expectancy in men has gone up by 7 years and in women it's gone up by almost a decade. India has also been successful in reducing both child and adult mortality. However, the study also found that death rates from some major chronic conditions were on the rise, including liver cancer caused by hepatitis C (up 125 percent since 1990), drug use disorders (up 63 percent), chronic kidney disease (up 37 percent), diabetes (up nine percent) and pancreatic cancer (up seven percent.
In 1990, the average life expectancy age in the world was 65.3 years and it went up to 71.5 years in 2013. And this increase came despite the rising cases of liver disease and deaths caused by chronic kidney disease.
Global life expectancy rose by 5.8 years in men and 6.6 years in women between 1990 and 2013. The increase was attributed to falling death rates from cancers (down by 15 percent) and cardiovascular disease (down by 22 percent) in high-income regions of the world.
In less affluent regions, it was attributed to rapidly declining death rates against diarrhea, lower respiratory tract infections and neonatal disorders.
Only one region, sub-Saharan Africa, did not benefit from the upward trend with deaths from HIV/AIDS resulting in a drop in average life expectancy of five years. According to lead author Dr. Christopher Murray, professor of Global Health at the University of Washington, "The progress we are seeing against a variety of illnesses and injuries is good, even remarkable, but we can and must do even better."
He added, "The huge increase in collective action and funding given to the major infectious diseases such as diarrhea, measles, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and malaria has had a real impact."
The Global Burden of Disease Study 2013, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, also found that some low-income countries such as Nepal, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Niger, the Maldives, Timor-Leste and Iran had seen exceptional gains over the past 23 years with life expectancy in those countries rising by more than 12 years for both sexes.
And despite dramatic drops in under-five deaths from 7.6 million in 1990 to 3.7 million in 2013, the study also noted that lower respiratory tract infections, malaria, and diarrhoeal disease were still in the top five global causes of child deaths, killing almost two million children a year.