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Deaths in Scotland spike to 10% above average

Deaths in Scotland rose by almost 10% compared with the five-year rolling average, new quarterly figures show.

A total of 14,982 people died between 1 April and 30 June, up 9.7% on the five-year average of 13,660.

National Records of Scotland (NRS) found that there was no single major reason for the increase, but cited a spike in deaths from illnesses and other causes.

Continuing a trend since 2015, deaths again outnumbered births in Scotland.

The quarterly data showed cancer remained the number one killer, with 4,056 people losing their lives to the disease, a 0.6% increase on the five-year average.

The second most prevalent cause of death was circulatory diseases (3,808), which showed an increase of just over 6%.

Covid-19 was involved in the deaths of 545 people during the time period.

The number of infant deaths (46) represented a 12% increase, the figures showed, while stillbirths were down by 17% to 36.

Alzheimer's and dementia deaths increased by more than 7% on the five-year rolling average.

Julie Ramsay, a vital events statistician at NRS, said: "In this quarter we have seen an increase of almost 10% in the number of deaths compared with the average for this time of year.

"There doesn't appear to be a single factor behind this increase.

"Analysis of the causes of death show an increase across a wide range of illnesses and other causes."

Figures released by NRS on Tuesday also showed there were 11,237 births during the second quarter of this year, an 11.5% drop on the five-year average – a continuation of a trend of deaths outnumbering births since 2015.

The number of marriages was the highest for a second quarter since 1993, with 9,331 couples tying the knot – 26% above the five-year average.

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