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Study finds racial/ethnic disparities in Travis County mortality rates

Thursday, August 4, 2016 by Nora Ankrum

The Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department has published a new analysis of data on mortality rates in Travis County. The report finds that the majority of deaths (57 percent) are linked to “the most common, costly and preventable of all health problems” such as cancer, heart and lung disease, stroke, diabetes and obesity, according to an announcement from the city. Although smoking rates have been declining, the report finds that tobacco use is still “the leading cause of preventable death in Travis County, causing more deaths than AIDS, crack, heroin, cocaine, alcohol, car accidents, fire and murder – COMBINED.” The report also shows that mortality rates linked to preventable disease are higher among minorities than among whites and highest among African-Americans. For more information, see the July-August 2016 issue of the Travis County Medical Society Journal.

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