Monday, January 16, 2017

Death Rates Higher in Nonmetro Areas

With the Affordable Care Act and expanded access to health care services under threat, the CDC has released a report suggesting any erosion of care will be a bigger problem for the residents of nonmetropolitan America than for those living in metro areas.

The CDC report compares age-adjusted death rates in metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas for the five leading causes of death—heart disease, cancer, accidents (including drug poisonings), chronic lower respiratory disease, and stroke. Result: death rates in nonmetropolitan areas are higher for all five causes of death.

What accounts for the higher death rates? A cluster of characteristics, reports the CDC. The residents of nonmetropolitan areas "tend to have less access to health care services and to be less likely to receive preventive services," explains the report. "In addition, they are more likely to be uninsured or underinsured, delay seeking care, live in poverty, and have lower educational attainment."

Source: CDC, Mortality and Morbidity Weekly Report, Leading Causes of Death in Nonmetropolitan and Metropolitan Areas—United States, 1999–2014

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