Cardiovascular Disease Deaths

Deaths due to cardiovascular disease per 100,000 population

  • New Jersey State Health Assessment
  • Multiple Cause of Death Data, National Vital Statistics System, National Center for Health Statistic
Calculated by the Dashboard Team using data from 2020, 3 year estimate.
Dashboard-City Average

Why do we measure cardiovascular disease deaths?

Heart or cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death in the U.S., but the vast majority of cases (80%) can be prevented by making healthy lifestyle choices.1 Cardiovascular disease, which affects the heart and the blood vessels, can lead to heart attacks, strokes, heart arrhythmias, heart failure, and heart valve problems.2 Health conditions—like obesity, high blood pressure, high stress, and diabetes—and lifestyle choices, such as smoking, physical inactivity, and poor diet, are all associated with cardiovascular disease.2 Race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and geography also put people at risk of cardiovascular disease. Black or Hispanic individuals, people with low income, or people living in the southeastern U.S. are all at higher risk of cardiovascular disease.3

How do we measure cardiovascular disease deaths?

This metric includes anyone who has died due to cardiovascular disease.

Strengths and Limitations

Strengths of Metric

Limitations of Metric

• In highlighting the number of deaths, this metric can be a sign that medical and lifestyle interventions have not adequately addressed disease risk.

• This metric is available broken down by race and ethnicity, which can help target resources and interventions for groups that historically have been underrepresented.

• This metric only captures cardiovascular disease deaths, not the prevalence of cardiovascular disease. 

• It may be easier to take action on indicators that reflect risk factors for cardiovascular disease, like high blood pressure and diabetes.

• This number can be overestimated because of misclassification of cardiovascular disease on death certificates.4

• Race and ethnicity data are often collected using discrete options that may not account for all or multiple identities, leading to undercounting of those who are more likely to select “other.”


Cardiovascular disease deaths are calculated by the following formula:

Cardiovascular Disease Death Calculation

This metric is age-adjusted to the 2010 U.S. age distribution. For more information on the calculation, please refer to the City Health Dashboard Technical Document.

Data Source

Estimates for this metric are from Multiple Cause of Death Data from the National Vital Statistics System of the National Center for Health Statistics. Multi-year data are available for this metric. For more information, please refer to Using Multi-Year Data: Tips and Cautions

Cardiovascular disease deaths are identified by the International Disease Classification code (version 10) that classifies underlying causes of death. This metric uses the I10, I64, I110, I119, I120, I129, I130-32, I139, I150, I159, I201, I209, I210-14, I219, I220, I229, I241, I248-49, I250-51, I253-55, I258-59, I500-01, I509, I600, I602, I604-09, I610-19, I620-21, I629, I630-36, I638, I639, I670-79, I690-94, & I698 codes.


  1. Writing Group M, Mozaffarian D, Benjamin EJ, et al. Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics-2016 Update: A Report From the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2016;133(4):e38-360.

  2. Mayo Clinic. Heart disease - Symptoms and causes. 2018; Accessed January 16, 2018.

  3. Mensah GA, Mokdad AH, Ford ES, Greenlund KJ, Croft JB. State of disparities in cardiovascular health in the United States. Circulation. 2005;111(10):1233-1241.

  4. Pagidipati NJ, Gaziano TA. Estimating deaths from cardiovascular disease: a review of global methodologies of mortality measurement. Circulation. 2013;127(6):749-756.

Last updated: July 26, 2023