The greatest determinant of a person’s health is their zip code. Throughout the US, residents of segregated, low-income, often formerly redlined communities, experience the poorest health outcomes and lowest rates of life expectancy.
Life expectancy in NYC has been increasing and the city now boasts one of the highest life expectancies in the country. The average child born and raised in NYC can expect to live to 81.2 years of age. But life expectancy across the city can vary up to almost 11 years, depending on a child’s race, economic status, and zip code.
Brownsville has the lowest life expectancy in NYC, at 75.1 years. In the Upper East Side, life expectancy is 85.9. These disparities in life expectancy reflect racial and economic disparities between neighborhoods. Brownsville is one of the most segregated zip codes in NYC and has the largest concentration of public housing in the city. It is 76% black, 20% Latino, 1% white and 1% Asian. 28% of its residents live in poverty, compared to 20% citywide. In contrast, the Upper East Side is 78% white and 10% Asian, and just 7% of its residents live in poverty.