Draft Washington State Health Assessment released; local counties on low end

The Washington Department of Health has released a draft version of the Washington State Health Assessment, and they have opened a public comment period until January 23.

The draft is meant to be a;

“comprehensive assessment of health in our state” that was composed after working with local and tribal health, healthcare delivery, and the public health agencies statewide.

According to a summary by Secretary of Health John Wiesman, DrPH, MPH,

“The data show that, with few exceptions, Washington has similar or better health outcomes, similar or lower risk factor prevalence, and similar or higher protective factor prevalence compared to the United States.”

DOH says that the assessment pulls data from a variety of sources, looking at population, health status and health behaviors, access to healthcare and preventive services, environments, and social and economic forces impacting health and well-being.

In local figures, they say that Grays Harbor and Pacific County are included in the counties with the highest years of potential life lost (YPLL). The study measures “premature mortality before age 65”, which they say much of which is considered preventable.

It also shows that while Grays Harbor and Pacific County were lower than the state average in many categories, we join many other counties above the average in coronary heart disease, Obesity Prevalence, Youth Depressive Feelings, Suicide Rates, and we have the highest Drug Overdose Rates in the state.

Grays Harbor is noted in the assessment as showing that in a study of our 10th graders, a higher percentage meets Physical Activity Recommendations than much of the state.

Grays Harbor and Pacific County are also noted as having a lower percentage of residents receiving water treated with fluoride than the majority of the state.

In the assessment, it says that between the 2000 and 2010 censuses, Washington’s population increased by 14%. They say that figures from the State Office of Financial Management project this growth will continue with a 28% increase to will bring the state’s population to 9.1 million by 2040.

The public has an opportunity to comment on the assessment through the DOH website.


Full Washington State Health Assessment

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