The Health and Demographic Crisis in Post-Soviet Russia: A Two-Phase Development

  • Mark G. Field


Among the many scourges that are haunting post-Soviet Russia is a health and demographic crisis of major proportions, with ominous implications reaching into the third millennium. Indeed, the health of the population has been one of the major casualties of the collapse of the Soviet regime, and of the transition to a new political and economic system, although the crisis had its origins considerably earlier, in the 1960s. The major aspects of that crisis consist of a yearly decrease in the size of the population, stagnant or decreased life expectancy, increased premature mortality, the return of infectious diseases, rising morbidity, a degradation of the environment, and practically every other index related to the well-being of the population, including a length of life differential between the sexes in favor of women unprecedented in peace time and unique in the world in its magnitude. Since 1994 there have been some improvements as the population adjusts to the new conditions, although it is too early to determine whether this trend will continue, given the renewed shocks caused by the economic crash of August 1998.


Infant Mortality Russian Population Soviet Regime Soviet System Russian Woman 
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© Mark G. Field and Judyth L. Twigg 2000

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  • Mark G. Field

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