Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Minnesota deemed healthiest state, Louisiana worst

Minnesota was deemed the healthiest U.S. state for the fourth year in a row Reuters/Yahoo!News 12/5/06 "The report weighed a series of factors in determining rankings, such as prevalence of obesity, smoking, infectious disease, cardiovascular deaths, infant mortality, child poverty, immunization rates, workplace deaths and auto deaths...Southern states performed particularly poorly while those in New England and some in the Upper Midwest fared well."

Very interesting report. The full version can be found here. Fish around on that page and you'll find the PDF link.

Some highlights: The good news is most causes of death are down significantly since 1990, although obesity has gotten 110% worse. Jeez louis. And a 19% increase in the uninsured population. Not good. And in the last year violent crime rose 1%.

USA is one of the worst developed countries for infant mortality - 2004 (Iceland is best). Shameful. And we're near the bottom of the list for life expectancy - 2002 - at birth - 71F 67M (Japan is best 78F 72M). Interesting to note that many of the top countries in the life expectancy category employ around 80% of medical records in an electronic format. USA is at 17%. Correlation, you bet.

Also I wonder how many people have noticed that in this study the states with the most sunny days have some of the lowest cancer rates - like Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado Hawaii. States that have less days of sunshine seem to have higher cancer rates, on average - though it's a bit uneven here. Vitamin D again?

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