Thanks to medical advancement, the life expectancy worldwide is getting longer. Over the past 150 years, life expectancy in Germany has nearly doubled. Statistically speaking, a child born today can be expected to reach an average age of 78.6 (for men) or 83.4 (for women). This rapid increase in life expectancy is not unique to Europe and North America but is a global development, although it began in Asia and Africa only in the 20th century.