American life expectancy increased by a month-and-a-half in 2018

American life expectancy increased by a month-and-a-half in 2018 thanks to falling rates of drug overdose and cancer deaths after three years of steady declines driven by the opioid epidemic, CDC says Americans born in 2018 can now expect to live to be 78.7 years old  It marks an increase of 0.12 percent over 2017's life expectancy   After decades of improving life expectancy, the expected age at death fell in 2015, 2016 and 2017  Opioid overdoses were blamed for the historic declines, but now the CDC credits falling death rates for these, other injuries and cancer for the improvement  

By Natalie Rahhal Acting Us Health Editor

Published: 19:17 GMT, 3 February 2020 | Updated: 19:17 GMT, 3 February 2020

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After three consecutive years of declining life expectancy in the US, Americans can finally expect to live (a little) longer again, according to the latest figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

Between 1999 and 2017, drug overdoses claimed the lives of more than 702,000 Americans and the devastating opioid epidemic started driving life expectancy down in 2015. 

At long last, the tide of the opioid epidemic has turned, and with it, the trend in American life expectancy.  

American lives were 0.13 percent longer in 2018 than in 2017 - only a month-and-a-half longer for an average individual, but a significant gain from a public health standpoint.  

After three years of declining life expectancy, Americans could finally expect to live longer again in 2018 as the opioid epidemic begins to subside, the CDC reported

After three years of declining life expectancy, Americans could finally expect to live longer again in 2018 as the opioid epidemic begins to subside, the CDC reported 

Life expectancy in the US, one of the richest nations in the world, was marching steadily upward from 1999 onward. 

Despite massive improvements in survival rates from diseases like cancer, thanks to innovations in diagnostics and treatment and a newfound cultural focus on health, the last three

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