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Unformatted text preview: Articles Summary Background In March, 2003, military forces, mainly from the USA and the UK, invaded Iraq. We did a survey to compare mortality during the period of 146 months before the invasion with the 178 months after it. Methods A cluster sample survey was undertaken throughout Iraq during September, 2004. 33 clusters of 30 households each were interviewed about household composition, births, and deaths since January, 2002. In those households reporting deaths, the date, cause, and circumstances of violent deaths were recorded. We assessed the relative risk of death associated with the 2003 invasion and occupation by comparing mortality in the 178 months after the invasion with the 146-month period preceding it. Findings The risk of death was estimated to be 25-fold (95% CI 1642) higher after the invasion when compared with the preinvasion period. Two-thirds of all violent deaths were reported in one cluster in the city of Falluja. If we exclude the Falluja data, the risk of death is 15-fold (1123) higher after the invasion. We estimate that 98 000 more deaths than expected (8000194 000) happened after the invasion outside of Falluja and far more if the outlier Falluja cluster is included. The major causes of death before the invasion were myocardial infarction, cerebrovascular accidents, and other chronic disorders whereas after the invasion violence was the primary cause of death. Violent deaths were widespread, reported in 15 of 33 clusters, and were mainly attributed to coalition forces. Most individuals reportedly killed by coalition forces were women and children. The risk of death from violence in the period after the invasion was 58 times higher (95% CI 81419) than in the period before the war. Interpretation Making conservative assumptions, we think that about 100 000 excess deaths, or more have happened since the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Violence accounted for most of the excess deaths and air strikes from coalition forces accounted for most violent deaths. We have shown that collection of public-health information is possible even during periods of extreme violence. Our results need further verification and should lead to changes to reduce non- combatant deaths from air strikes. Introduction The number of Iraqis dying because of conict or sanctions since the 1991 Gulf war is uncertain. 1,2 Claims ranging from a denial of increased mortality 37 to millions of excess deaths 8 have been made. The Coalition Provisional Authority and the Iraqi Ministry of Health have identified the halving of infant mortality as a major objective. 9 In the absence of any surveys, however, they have relied on Ministry of Health records....
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This note was uploaded on 07/11/2011 for the course SYA 6305 taught by Professor Tardanico during the Fall '08 term at FIU.
- Fall '08
- The Land