The forecasted increase echoes the dramatic improvement in life expectancy from the 1960s till today - when the average increased by 19 years between 1960 and 2014, the study notes.
Bennett pointed out that "Korea got a lot of things right" when it comes to health care access, which is why the increases in longevity have been so widespread.
The study, published in the Lancet, also shows the gap in life expectancy between women and men is closing. (After peaking in 1985, heart disease deaths fell dramatically - but there has been an uptick since 2010, as you can see in this study.) The US also has some of the highest obesity, homicide, and infant and maternal mortality rates in the developed world.
South Korea's league-topping performance is due to improvements in its economy and education, say the authors. A notable exception is the U.S., where a combination of obesity, deaths of mothers and babies at birth, homicides and lack of equal access to healthcare is predicted to cause life expectancy to rise more slowly than in most comparable countries. The other countries languishing at the bottom are: Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Japan (increases predicted to be 1.4, 1.5, and 1.8 years respectively for women), and Macedonia, Greece, and Sweden (2.4, 2.7, 3.0, respectively for men).
South Koreans may have the longest life expectancy in the world within 13 years, the Imperial College London study suggests.
By 2030 life expectancy for South Korean women could top nine decades, an average lifespan long thought to be out of reach, researchers said Wednesday.
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The study, by Imperial College London and the World Health Organization, looked at lifespans in 35 industrialized countries and published its findings in the Lancet, a United Kingdom medical journal.
The study described the United States as having a life expectancy at birth that is "lower than most other high-income countries, and is projected to fall further behind".
Boys born in 2030 in the United States may expect to have similar lifespans to those in the Czech Republic, the study suggests, and girls will have life expectancy similar to those in Croatia and Mexico.
The researchers calculated a country's life expectancy at birth by assessing the age at which people die across the whole population.
They found that in 11 of the 25 countries, senior women were likely to live an addition 24 years, and in 22 of the countries, senior men were likely to live an additional 20 years. "The poor recent and projected US performance is at least partly due to high and inequitable mortality from chronic diseases and violence, and insufficient and inequitable health care".
"It's about staying healthy in middle age, smoking, diet, exercise - all those kinds of things are all meant to help Australians live longer and healthier lives". "Our predictions of increasing lifespans highlight our public health and healthcare successes. In particular, we will need to both strengthen our health and social care systems and to establish alternative models of care, such as technology assisted home care".