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Report: Too Often in TN, the Good Die Young

June 14, 2007


Nashville, TN - Those in search of a long and healthy life won't be putting Tennessee on the list. A new report (from The Commonwealth Fund) shows the state ranks in the bottom five when it comes to preventing premature deaths, and the state scored just "average" in health quality. And that's based on numbers before the TennCare cuts, which led to the largest single creation of uninsured in the nation's history. Comments from Karen Davis, president of The Commonwealth Fund.


Cheers to a long and healthy life ... if you move from Tennessee to Minnesota. A new report from The Commonwealth Fund analyzes health data from all the states, and Tennessee doesn't make a good showing - Minnesota is the best. Karen Davis with The Commonwealth Fund says Tennessee is one of the worst for deaths from preventable causes, and has a high rate of infant mortality...


"It's very troubling that your prospects of a long and healthy life are dimmer in Tennessee than in even the average state."

Tennessee scored "average" on health quality - a rating that's expected to plummet in the next report because it didn't take the TennCare cuts into consideration. Over one million people in Tennessee are uninsured.


Davis says this new compilation of data should be a guideline for state leaders in designing a plan to fix the health care system - a plan she says should focus on accessibility, affordability, and prevention...


"In the case of Tennessee, it seems to be a story of a lot of people are winding up in the hospital who shouldn't be winding up in the hospital.
And it's making sure that we intervene earlier."

Cheers to a long and healthy life ... if you move from Tennessee to Minnesota. A new report from The Commonwealth Fund analyzes health data from all the states, and Tennessee doesn't make a good showing. Deborah Smith reports.


"...into consideration"

Karen Davis can be reached at 212-606-3853. The full report, "Aiming Higher: Results from a State Scorecard on Health System Performance"
is at www.commonwealthfund.org.


Deborah Smith/Chris Thomas, Public News Service - TN