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Report details status of public health in Travis County

Friday, April 7, 2017 by Nina Hernandez

Let’s start with the good news. In a growing Travis County, fewer students are using tobacco products, fewer people are dying of lung cancer and the infant mortality rate for African-Americans is dropping. However, according to Austin Public Health’s 2017 Critical Health Indicators Report, there is still work to be done. More Travis County residents lose their lives to cancer than anything else. Beyond that, tuberculosis is on the rise, over 100 citizens commit suicide each year and drug overdoses “are the leading cause of unintentional injury death for those 25 through 64 years of age.” In a statement released Thursday, the Dell Medical School addressed some of the major problems facing the county and how it is working to solve them. A major part of any solution is engaging those who have been left out of the health care system. “As Austin continues to grow, so does the economic divide between rich and poor,” the statement read. “Many historically underserved residents lack access to quality health care and education and are at higher risk for heart disease, cancer, diabetes, HIV and other illnesses.”

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