Culture

America’s Health Rankings – Indiana

Every year, the United Health Care Foundation releases the America’s Health Rankings of the most and least healthy states in the U.S. The report, meant to help communities identify and subsequently improve how they address major health problems in the community, shows that while some states are doing better than others, none are the picture of perfect health.

Where does Indiana rank?

Indiana is 38th this year, unchanged from 2010, and the highlights are listed below:

  • While smoking has decreased from 26.9 percent to 21.2 percent of adults in the past ten years, over 1.0 million people still smoke in Indiana.
  • Almost 1.5 million adults in Indiana are obese, 490,000 more individuals than 10 years ago.
  • In the past year, the rate of preventable hospitalizations increased from 75.6 to 78.4 discharges per 1,000 Medicare enrollees.
  • In the past year, the infant mortality rate decreased from 7.8 to 7.3 deaths per 1,000 live births.
  • In the past five years, diabetes increased from 8.3 percent to 9.8 percent of the adult population. Now, 478,000 Indiana adults have diabetes.
  • In the past five years, the percentage of children in poverty increased from 18.6 percent to 25.2 percent of persons under age 18.
  • Infectious disease, at 7.8 cases per 100,000 population, has returned to levels experienced three years ago after dipping to 4.4 and 4.6 cases per 100,000 population in 2009 and 2010, respectively.

As indicated, our trends are not moving in the right direction. When businesses are looking at relocation, they are looking at the health and expertise of the local worker populations. The County Health Ranking results released earlier this year had our community ranked 81 out of 92 counties in health. The United Healthcare report confirms our poor numbers in a State that already ranks low across the United States.

For more detailed information, visit the United Healthcare site at:

http://www.americashealthrankings.org/

You can also visit the State Health Department Web Site at www.in.gov/isdh.

Todd Smekens

Journalist, consultant, publisher, and servant-leader with a passion for truth-seeking. Enjoy motorcycling, meditation, and spending quality time with my daughter and rescue hound. Spiritually-centered first and foremost. Lived in multiple states within the USA and frequent traveler to the mountains.
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