Friday, January 26, 2007

What is the State of Our Nation's Health?

tidbits that tantalize

Take A

Deep Breath...

Do you love health statistics? If so, the 2006 National Health Interview Survey is a must read. If, on the other hand, statistics bore you silly, you may want to keep a copy at your bedside table for those nights you have difficulty sleeping - if this doesn't put you to sleep call your doctor immediately.

The early release of the survey provides an interesting look at 15 health parameters for the first 6 months of 2006, with comparative data from 1997 through 2005. Among the areas reported are Lack of Health Insurance, Usual Place for Obtaining Care, Current Alcohol and Smoking Data, Obesity and Serious Psychological Distress. The survey reports on data collected from over 40, 000 respondents.

A quick preview:

-14.5% are uninsured - this compares to a range of 14.2 - 15.4% in the prior 9 years. Hmm...

-86.7% have a "usual" place to go for medical care. While this usual place is defined as excluding the emergency room, no details are given as to the actual setting. So, if you usually go to your mother's house for medical care, well - you're in.

-5.5% of those needing medical care failed to do so because of cost. This represents an increase from 4.2 % in 1998.

-25.6% of adults over 20 were obese. Wow - this represents a 7% increase since 1997. This is, pardon the pun, a Huge health problem for our country.

Alcohol consumption has varied little and, on a positive note, cigarette smoking has seen a consistent decline.

OK - if you're still awake, the diagnosis is no longer in question: you have a sleep disorder. On the other hand, if you awake shortly to discover a bit of dried drool staining your oddly creased face, you know what to do. Throw away those horrible sleeping pills, print out a copy of the 2006 survey and get ready to enjoy the best night's rest you've had in years.

To access the full survey results, see this from the National Center for Health Statistics.


Blogger Hal said...

Hi Tim,
I enjoy that, Thanks. I just put some info on my new blog you might be able to write about. I will post your link to it this weekend.
Take care,

2:57 PM  

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