Source: Santa Barbara County Public Health Department
The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department has analyzed the most recent local death data available and has compiled a report highlighting key findings and trends. Death reporting is an essential component to understanding the health of our residents. Overall, the mortality rate of Santa Barbara County is 8% less than that of the state of California. This trend has persisted since 2010 and when looking at the age-adjusted death rate among residents, it has been decreasing since 2010.
The top leading causes of death when adjusted for age were cancer, heart disease, and unintentional injuries. All three top causes of death were higher among men compared to women. When looking at the last three years of available data, 2018 – 2020, compared to the prior three years, there were statistically significant decreases in death rates of Asian/Pacific Islanders, Multiracial, and Hispanic residents. During this time, there were increases in death rates among White Non-Hispanic residents. White Non-Hispanic residents had nearly three times higher death rates than Hispanic residents.
Analyzing death rates by region shows south county had 25% lower rates than central or north county. Central and north county had similar death rates. This data highlights geographical differences in mortality data. Understanding how geographical location impacts health is central to achieving health equity, a goal of the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department.
“This data indicates that residents in Santa Barbara County face different health outcomes based on their race/ethnicity and location in the county. A more detailed report will be published to further understand these trends by cause of death in the coming months,” said Joy Kane, Senior Epidemiologist.
This report also includes one complete year of COVID-19 death data from 2020. While this data is limited to the early stages of the pandemic, COVID-19 was the sixth leading cause of death in 2020. More current COVID-19 death data will be analyzed as soon as it is available. Read the full Leading Causes of Death Report here.