Related Videos

Top 10 Countries With Highest Death Rates

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Michael Wynands
Written by Michael Wynands For more incredible content from Getty images, be sure to check out our suggest page here: These are the worlds countries with the highest measured rates of death. WatchMojo presents the Top 10 Countries with the Highest Death Rates. But what will take the top spot on our list, will it be Lesotho, Bulgaria, or the Central African Republic! Watch to find out! Watch on WatchMojo: Have an idea for our next video, be sure to check out the suggest page here: https://www.WatchMojo.comsuggest/

You must register to a corporate account to download this video. Please login

These are the nations where the grim reaper is most active. Welcome to, and today we’ll be counting down the Top 10 Countries with Highest Death Rates.

For this list, we’ll be looking at nations across the globe where the incidence of death is highest, based on statistics from 2016.

#10: Romania

Generally speaking, one would assume that death rates generally decline over time, thanks to the steady and progressive advancements in the fields of medicine and personal health. The opposite has happened in this Southeastern European nation, however, where the mortality rate has gone up from .87% in 1960 to 1.31% in 2016. Yet Romania isn’t facing an epidemic or anything like that. In reality, it’s a simple numbers game - the population is aging and has been aging for decades. As of 2015, the birth rate is 1.33, well below the standard replacement rate of 2.1. As the population ages, the incidence of death becomes higher per capita.

#9: Croatia

With a birthrate of just 1.5 children per mother (yes, we know there are no half-babies), Croatia is in a similar boat to its fellow European country, Romania. This figure gives it one of the lowest birth rates found anywhere on the planet. Even the country’s strong immigration numbers aren’t enough to offset the low birth rate; as such, the death rate of 1.3186% (or roughly 1318 people per 100,000), means that the population is shrinking - so much so that the population is expected to drop from 4.19 million to 3.1 by 2051, unless both immigration and birth rates go up.

#8: Hungary

Barely surpassing Croatia’s death rate by a fraction per 100,000, Hungary takes this spot with 1.32% (or 1319 deaths per 100,000). Like many of its fellow European nations, Hungary’s seeing a population decline due to low birth rates. The government is naturally concerned about this high mortality rate and its effect on the overall population, and has taken measures to encourage its citizens to have children, including extended maternity leave. Life expectancy has steadily risen since the country switched away from communism, but not enough to counteract the low birth rate.

#7: Russia

This country is massive, with a seriously substantial population. The incidence of death, however, is also substantial at 1.37%. Unlike the aforementioned Eastern European nations, however, in recent years, birth rates have increased, stabilizing the population after a period of significant decline from the mid-’90s to mid-2000s. Even looking at the death rate in isolation, things are looking up for Russia. In 2003, the deaths per 100,000 peaked at 1640, a number which has since not-insignificantly diminished to the recent 2016 count of 1367 deaths. That’s definite progress.

#6: Lithuania

As part of the U.S.S.R., this small country experienced steady population growth until it achieved independence in 1990, at which point a steady and at times sharp decline in population began to occur. In just about a decade and a half, the population fell from 3.7 million to 2.8. With a mortality rate of 1.38% (or 1380 per 100,000), and a fertility rate of just 1.59 children to each woman . . unless something changes, Lithuania’s incidence of death is only likely to grow, while the country’s population continues to dwindle.

#5: Latvia

A neighbor to Lithuania, this small northern european nation has lost nearly a third of its total population since 1989. The death rates have been significantly higher. In 1994, it peaked at 1660 per 100,000. Despite the fact that incidence of death has slowed to 1454 per 100,000, the sub-replacement birth rate means that the mortality rate can’t really get much lower, unless Lithuania takes action to become a hub for immigration or implements measure to drastically encourage people to have children. As of 2017, they’ve already dipped below 2 million residents.

#4: Ukraine

Back in 1993, the Ukrainian population peaked after 30 plus years of growth at approximately 52.17 million. Flash forward 15 years and you’re down to an estimated 42.4 million - and that’s including Crimea. The mortality rate in the Ukraine has generally been on the rise since the 1960s, but the early 1990s saw a steep increase in deaths per capita, remaining high in the early 2000s and peaking in 2005 at 1.66%. In 2011, it dipped down closer to its current 1.45%. Since then however, it’s been inching back up in small increments. Unlike the preceding countries, a poor medical system, lifestyle and environment are having a significant negative factors.

#3: Bulgaria

A significant leap up in numbers from the Ukraine, the mortality rate in this Southeastern European republic is 15.2. That’s the highest its been in over 50 years of recorded history and is the culmination of a rather steady rise during that time, suggesting that it is only likely to continue to get higher in the future. Since 1988, the country’s seen a decrease of roughly 1.9 million people in terms of its overall population, stemming from a economic crisis, which in turn resulted in mass emigration. Now, it faces a demographic crisis, with a birth rate among the lowest in the world, and a death rate among the highest.

#2: Lesotho

In this tiny African nation, surrounded by South Africa on all sides, a full 40% of people live under the poverty line. Unlike almost every other country discussed up until this one, its birth rate, a healthy 3.14, can’t be blamed: its population is on the rise. Lesotho’s mortality rate is the result of much bleaker issues than a lack of children. The country has a terrible HIV problem, with roughly 23.6 percent of the population infected. In cities, that number climbs to a staggering 50% of women under 40. Thankfully, the death rate is finally falling (down from 1.71 in 2003), likely thanks to HIV awareness and treatment programs.

#1: Central African Republic

According to the statistics available at the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation on Global Burden of Disease, this landlocked country has the highest mortality rate in the world. Its birth rate is actually strong, with 4.21 births per woman as of 2015. Its population has indeed grown rapidly for decades, and yet, it still has the greatest incidence of death per capita. As with Lesotho, disease and lack of proper medical treatment are the culprits, with HIV, tuberculosis, diarrhea and lower respiratory infections claiming the most lives. Perhaps most shocking though? Relative to the country’s post-independence history, this is actually close to the lowest that the country’s death rate has ever been.


Sign in to access this feature

Related Blogs