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Women's health meltdown: all 50 states miss goals

Andrew Freiburghouse | December 14, 2010

Health care reform calls for new laws that require health insurance policies to cover preventative care. For women, that's not a moment too soon.

A recently issued report by the National Women's Law Center and Oregon Health Sciences University says the U.S. failed to reach almost any of the women's health goals set by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Healthy People 2010 agenda. Out of the 26 health measures, only three received a satisfactory rating--women getting mammograms, women getting colorectal cancer screenings and the number of women making annual dentist's visits, according to a USA Today report. Otherwise, women by and large don't get the care they need.

Crisis in diabetes and high blood pressure

The report notes that results vary greatly depending on the state, but diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure are increasing for women. Both of those diseases have an obvious link to the climbing rates of obesity in women in this country.

It's no surprise that the states that did the poorest in this report (Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma and West Virginia) also ranked as some of the states with the highest obesity rates by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But no state received a satisfactory rating, and only two, Massachusetts and Vermont, got the second-highest ranking. Until the problem of obesity and the lack of general fitness in this country is seriously addressed, it's likely we won't see too many states, or women, getting good grades on health care reports.

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