Week 1 Activity Post

The country I have selected to do research on for this class is Brazil.

The total population of Brazil as of 2016 is about 207.7 million people. Of that 58.9 million are under 18 years of age. Their population annual growth rate is 0.6%, which is actually lower than I expected it to be. Currently their life expectancy is 73.7 years of age, however since 1970 they were able to increase life expectancies by a whopping 15 years, as compared to the U.S.’s 8-year increase, which was surprising to me. Another figure that has changed a lot since 1970 is the birth rate. In 1970, the birth rate was 35, while in 2012 the birthrate was more than half of that at 15.1. However, the death rate in 2012 was 6.4 meaning there are approximately 2 times the amount of births than deaths, which accounts for their low annual growth rate.

In terms of economics, their GDP per capita average growth rate is 1.7%, which is similar to the US’s. The most striking economic figure to me was the share of the household income between the poorest 40% of the country and the richest 20% of the country. The share of household income for the poorest 40% of the population is 10%, while for the richest 20% is a staggering 60%. I believe this income disparity might have great impacts on the share of healthcare in Brazil as well.

In looking at the demographics of the women in Brazil, they have a slightly higher life expectancy rate than males as well as a higher adult literacy rate. One of the things I found most striking about these demographics is that the contraceptive prevalence is 80.6%, which I think is very high. This might mean that they have better resources for contraception or sex education. Unfortunately, Brazil does seem to have a high maternal mortality ratio at 75, in comparison to the U.S., which is just 12.

The literacy rates for 15-24 year olds in the country are very high for both males and females, and actually the literacy rate for females is higher than males, at 98.3% compared to 96.7%. The adult literacy rate is 90.4% which is also a figure I was surprised to find very high.

In terms of urbanization, 84.9% of the population lives in an urban area, another statistic I find to be quite high. In addition to this large urban population, it surprised me that there also seems to be a dramatic difference in use of improved sanitation facilities between urban and rural areas. In urban areas it is 86.7%, while in rural areas it half of that at 48.8%.

Overall, in some areas Brazil seems to be more progressive, such as in the high literacy rate and contraceptive rate. But in other areas, such as wealth and sanitation facilities, there seems to be large disparities between different groups of the population.

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