The numbers show that minorities in America suffered the biggest impact, with African-Americans losing almost three years and Hispanics, almost two years of life expectancy.
Life expectancy in America had already shown signs of stalling in the years before the coronavirus, after rising steadily for most of the period since World War II.
As vaccines continue to be administered, the Covid-19 pandemic continues to affect countries around the globe, with the number of confirmed cases worldwide now surpassing 110 million, with over 2,432,000 deaths worldwide, with the United States having the most confirmed cases and deaths in the world.
The current life expectancy remains lower than the peak United States life expectancy of 78.9 years, from 2014, and is shorter than the average of 80 years in the OECD, an organisation of mostly-rich countries.
Last year was the deadliest year in American history, with total deaths surpassing 3 million for the first time.
National Center for Health Statistics
Overall, the life expectancy for American males is 75.1 years - a decline of 1.2 years from 2019 and about 5 years less than how long women are expected to live.
"Life expectancy at birth. may be underestimated since the populations more severely affected, Hispanic and non-Hispanic black populations, are more likely to live in urban areas", the report says.
Looking further at racial disparities in the data, the gap in life expectancy between non-Hispanic white and Black people widened from 4.1 years in 2019 to six years in the first half of 2020 - the largest gap since 1998. It's already known that 2020 was the deadliest year in US history, with deaths topping 3 million for the first time. It dropped 1.9 years for Latinos, to 79.9, and 0.8 years for white people, to 78. Because the NCHS wanted to assess the effects of 2020's increase in deaths, for the first time it published its life expectancy tables based on provisional death certificate data, rather than final counts.
Arias said the differences in life expectancy among racial groups were particularly striking, as the Covid-19 pandemic took a disproportionate toll on communities of color. One is that the data is from the first six months of 2020 - so it does not reflect the entirety of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Overall, the drop in life expectancy is more evidence of "our mishandling of the pandemic", Brawley said.