19 Feb 2020

Nelsonians longest living in New Zealand

8:27 pm on 19 February 2020

Residents of Nelson have the longest median lifespan in the country according the latest figures from Statistics New Zealand.

Nelson and Tasman Bay, Nelson generic

Nelsonians have the highest median lifespan in New Zealand. Photo: RNZ / Tracy Neal

The figures show that the median lifespan of people in Nelson is 81 for men and 86 for women.

This compares to the national median lifespan of 78 for men and 83 for women.

The figures are based on where a person dies, not necessarily where they lived most of their life.

Stats NZ said 20 percent of Nelson's population is aged 65 years old or over, compared with 16 percent for the whole of New Zealand, and therefore a higher proportion of deaths in Nelson will be of older people, increasing the median age at death.

Other areas with a high median lifespan include Marlborough, Otago, Canterbury, Taranaki, and Wellington.

The median lifespan has increased by more than a decade since 1949, when the median lifespan for a man was 67, and for a woman was 69.

Stats NZ population indicators manager Tehseen Islam said even in the last twenty years the median lifespan for both men and women have increased by a couple of years.

In 1999 the median lifespan for men was 75, and for women 81.

There were 34,260 registered deaths in New Zealand in 2019, up from 33,225 in 2018, and 59,637 live births, compared with 58,020 in 2018.