Life-expectancy gap

| May 9, 2017

A county-by-county survey of US life expectancy reports a 20-year gap between the lows and the highs, according to a story by Alan Boyle for Yahoo!

The gap between the highs and lows is said to correlate with socioeconomic factors, race and ethnicity, the availability of health care, and preventable risk factors such as obesity and smoking.

The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation and published in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggests that the gap is widening.

“This is way worse than any of us had assumed,” University of Washington professor Ali Mokdad, who leads US county health research at the institute, was said to have told The Guardian newspaper.

A cluster of counties in Colorado showed the highest life expectancy in 2014, with Summit County topping the list with 86.8 years.

South Dakota’s Oglala Lakota County reported the lowest average of 66.8 years, a figure that is comparable to life expectancies in Sudan and Iraq.

The good news was said to be that nearly all counties registered gains in life expectancy between 1980 and 2014.

The bad news was said to be that the high-low gap had widened over those 34 years, and that 13 counties had registered declines in expected lifespans.

Cigarette smoking in the US has been on a downward trend for many years.

The full story is at: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/uw-researchers-map-widening-gap-193011156.html.

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