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REPORT: Utah ranks average for preventative healthcare

By Andreas Rivera, Standard-Examiner Staff - | Mar 1, 2016

The United Health Foundation has released a spotlight report focused on preventative healthcare with Utah ranking right in the middle with mixed scores in individual areas.

Utah was ranked 27th overall with a score based on access to health care, immunizations and chronic disease prevention, according to the report.

The report also examines individual issues regarding preventative care. Utah ranked first in preventing high blood pressure. In areas that need improvement, Utah ranked last for providing HPV vaccinations for adolescent females and 46th for adults having their cholesterol regularly checked.

The Huffington Post compiled a list of the top five states and bottom five states for each category based on the report. The highest ranking states include Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire.

Based on national results among different demographics which include race and income, the Foundation found that Hispanics are accessing preventive care less than non-Hispanic whites and non-Hispanic blacks.

“Prevention is one of the cornerstones of public health. The findings of this report are a call to action to ensure that all Americans, regardless of race, income, geography or education, have the opportunity to live whole, healthy and complete lives,” Reed Tuckson, M.D., external senior medical adviser to United Health Foundation said in a press release.

In Utah, 49.6 percent of Hispanics have a dedicated healthcare provider, compared to 75.1 percent for whites.

“Hispanics, who represent one of the largest and fastest-growing segments of the population in the United States, will face serious health challenges if we don’t find a way to improve their access to and use of preventive health care services. It’s the work we do now that will not only save lives but also billions of dollars in health care costs long-term,” Tuckson said.

Contact reporter Andreas Rivera at 801-625-4227 or arivera@standard.net. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter at @SE_Andreas.

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