Professor Vladimir Canudas-Romo, of the ANU School of Demography, along with Associate Professor Brian Houle and Dr Tim Adair (University of Melbourne) have published their new research article, "Quantifying Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Australian Life Expecancy" .
In 2020, at the peak of our lockdowns - their research showed that the life expectancy of Australian's jumped from an average annual increase of 0.09-0.14 (2015 to 2019) to 0.7 years in both males and females. Out of all of the countries in the study, this was the highest leap. To put this into perspective, the United States life expectancy has decreased by -1.7years for fmales and -2.2 years for males.
This increase in Australia's life expectancy wasn't just about the effects of the COVID-19 virus, there was also a "sharp decline in the spread of other infectious diseases due to the COVID-19 containment measures" - with a 20 percent decline in deaths from pneumonia and influenza. There is also evidence that non-infectious diseases related deaths where also minimised, such as those caused by car accidents, cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
Co-Author, Associate Professor Brian Houle, says it's yet to be clear if we will continue to see the same life-expectancy effects after the pandemic, but, "if working from home remains popular, with fewer people on the road commuting at peak times, that might result in reduced road accidents compared to before the COVID-19 pandemic".