PORTLAND, Maine — March 25, 2015 – MaineHealth today announced the release of the fifth annual Health Index Report, a credible resource for community health data in Maine. The report tracks progress on seven high priority issues that have a major impact on Maine’s overall health status: childhood immunizations, tobacco use, obesity, preventable hospitalizations, cardiovascular deaths, cancer deaths, and prescription drug abuse and addiction. The report describes how the MaineHealth system and its many partners are addressing each of the high priority issues through clinical, community and policy strategies.
The Health Index Report is released in concert with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s County Health Rankings, an annual snapshot comparing the overall health of nearly every county in the nation. Used as a benchmark for MaineHealth’s Health Index Report, the Rankings compare counties on 30 factors that influence health including education, housing, violent crime, jobs, diet, and exercise. According to the Rankings, the healthiest county in Maine is Sagadahoc and the least healthy county is Somerset. Oxford County had the most improved health outcomes, moving from 10th to 7th healthiest in the state.
“The findings included in today’s County Health Rankings are consistent with the data we track on a more local level,” said Deborah Deatrick, senior vice president for community health at MaineHealth. “The Health Index Report enhances the impact of these findings by illustrating trends specific to Maine and identifying opportunities for community health improvement.”
Some of the key findings from this year’s Health Index Report include:
- Up-to-date immunization rates at MaineHealth practices increased from 77% in 2012 to 80% in 2014.
- Maine’s youth smoking rate was 13% in 2013 versus the 2011 rate of 15.5%. In 1997, Maine’s rate (39%) was one of the highest in the country.
- The majority (58%) of Maine’s adult smokers have made a serious attempt to quit in the past 12 months.
- 78% of Maine fifth graders drank zero sugary beverages per day in 2013 – an increase of 9% since 2009.
- In 2010-2012, Maine’s rates for overall cardiovascular death, as well as rates for heart disease, coronary heart disease and heart attack, were significantly lower than the U.S. rates.
To explore the full Health Index Report and sign up for the quarterly newsletter, please visit www.mainehealthindex.org or www.mainehealth.org.
MaineHealth is a not-for-profit family of leading high-quality providers and other healthcare organizations working together so their communities are the healthiest in America. Ranked among the nation's top 100 integrated healthcare delivery networks, MaineHealth member organizations include Maine Medical Center, Franklin Community Health Network, LincolnHealth, Maine Behavioral Healthcare, Memorial Hospital, Pen Bay Healthcare, Southern Maine Health Care, Waldo County Healthcare, Western Maine Health, HomeHealth Visiting Nurses, Maine Physician Hospital Organization, NorDx and Synernet. Affiliates of MaineHealth include MaineGeneral Health, Mid Coast Health Services, New England Rehabilitation Hospital of Portland and St. Mary's Health System. www.mainehealth.org.
For more information:
System Director, Marketing and Communications