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SnapShot:  Health of the Region  2021


Snapshot: Health of the Region 2021  provides you with information that will help you be part of the healthcare conversation.  Taken together, the selected indicators reflect the overall health of the nation and the efficiency and efficacy of U.S. health systems.


In order to achieve improvement in healthcare, we need to get a snapshot of the current state of the health of individuals, communities and our nation that can serve as a base on which to build. Reliable, timely data is crucial for an objective presentation of a given medical situation, not just to help the diagnosis, but also to decide on a course of treatment and monitor results. Data is crucial for transparency and accountability, the foundations of our democracy. The challenge with data is to agree upon what is important and relevant. It is not possible to have meaningful outcomes if the data is difficult to understand, unreliable and inconsistent and understood differently by the various stakeholders. Data is not an opinion; it is usually reproducible and verifiable.


Data is a tool for more informed decision-making about, not a decision itself. Data is crucial for scientific advancement, and in the policy arena crucial for comparison of options. Of course data, numbers can be manipulated to serve particular interests. It is nearly impossible to accurately project the future status of complex systems such as economics, the human body, etc... The challenge is to present the information in a simplified manner that allows for utilization into meaningful discussion and decision-making. Clarifying terms and concepts that are central to proper decision-making need to be aired and critically reviewed. Having an agreed-upon base of data, or a way to challenge the data will elevate the discussion to a more productive level, a more deliberative conversation built on respect rather than fear and that allows for problem-solving. 


The snapshot section is divided into the following categories: 


US Economic Overview

Health Status of Philadelphians 

Health Status of the Delaware Valley Communities

The Healthcare Infrastructure

Healthcare Insurance Coverage

Access to Quality Healthcare

Cost of Healthcare

Quality Healthcare

Coordination of Care

Healthcare Innovation






Life expectancy at birth • (number of years that a newborn is expected to live if current mortality rates continue to apply). Steady increase in years of quality life for all Americans.

Infant mortality • (deaths of infants aged under 1 year per 1,000 live births)

Life expectancy at age 65 • (number of years of life remaining to a person at age 65 if current mortality rates continue to apply)

Injury related mortality • (age-adjusted mortality rates due to intentional and unintentional injuries)

Self-reported health status • (percentage of adults reporting fair or poor health)

Unhealthy days physical and mental • (mean number of physically or mentally unhealthy days in past 30 days)

Chronic disease prevalence • (percentage of adults reporting one or more of six chronic diseases [diabetes, cardiovascular disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, cancer, and arthritis])

Serious psychological distress • (percentage of adults with serious psychological distress as indicated by a score of > 13 on the K6 scale, with scores ranging from 0-24)



Smoking • (percentage of adults who have smoked > 100 cigarettes in their lifetime and who currently smoke some days or every day)

Physical Activity • (percentage of adults meeting the recommendation for moderate physical activity [at least 5 days a week for 30 minutes a day of moderate intensity activity or at least 3 days a week for 20 minutes a day of vigorous intensity activity])

Excessive Drinking • (percentage of adults consuming four [women] or five [men] or more drinks on one occasion and/or consuming more than an average of one [women] or two [men] drinks per day during the past 30 days)

Nutrition • (percentage of adults with a good diet [conformance to federal dietary guidance] as indicated by a score of > 80 on the Healthy Eating Index)

Obesity • (percentage of adults with a body mass index > 30)

Condom use • (proportion of youth in grades 9-12 who are sexually active and do not use condoms, placing them at risk for sexually transmitted infections)



Health care expenditures • (per capita health care spending)

Insurance coverage • (percentage of adults without health coverage via insurance or entitlement)

Unmet medical, dental, and prescription drug needs • (percentage of [non-institutionalized] people who did not receive or delayed receiving needed medical services, dental services, or prescription drugs during the previous year)

Preventive services • (percentage of adults who are up-to-date with age-appropriate screening services and flu vaccination)

Childhood immunization • (percentage of children aged 19-35 months who are up-to-date with recommended immunizations)

Preventable hospitalizations • (hospitalization rate for ambulatory care-sensitive conditions)

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