Mortality patterns in the settlement of Magallanes Region (Chile), 1885-1920

Clara E. Garcia-Moro, Universitat de Barcelona
Mireia Esparza, Universitat de Barcelona
Miguel Hernández, Universitat de Barcelona

This work analyzes mortality parameters in the Chilean region of Magallanes during the main settlement period (1885-1920). Time proximity and the presence of civil records from the beginning (1885), allowed us to know in detail one of the most recent territorial settlements. The southernmost region of Chile stretches from the 48º36’ to the 56º30’ South latitude. Since its set up in 1853, the population started growing with the arrival of new settlers, mainly of European origin. In 1885 there were 2085 inhabitants (INE) in the region and in 1920 population had grown until the 28960 inhabitants (INE). The mortality analysis has been done using the 10769 deaths registered between 1885 and 1920. The high mortality rates observed until 1900 (32‰) fall down to 19‰, starting with the beginning of the XXth Century. An epidemiological transition is not clearly visible due to the persistence of infectious diseases. The harsh climate of the region probably contributed to the high levels of tuberculosis and other infectious diseases related with the respiratory system observed. Also analyzed are death seasonality and some factors that can have an influence on the general seasonal model, like age, death cause or climate. These factors have been analyzed by means of a factorial correspondence analysis to identify relationships among the different studied periods. The pattern found, clearly seasonal and cyclic (p=0,000), is linked to the temperature, with a maximum during the southern spring. The number of deaths starts to fall at the beginning of summer and reaches the minimum values during autumn. This pattern is similar both in men and in women.

Presented in Poster Session 1