LA scores 5/10 for ability to counter infectious diseases

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Tuesday, December 24, 2013 - 12:00am

According to a report released by the Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), Louisiana is only about halfway to being fully prepared for an infectious disease outbreak.

The findings of “The Outbreaks: Protecting Americans from Infectious Diseases” report suggest that the Nation as a whole is underprepared due to outdated systems and limited resources.

States were scored on 10 key indicators of policies and capabilities that would protect against the threat of infectious disease. These indicators were developed in collaboration with public health experts with data from publicly available sources of from public officials.

A majority of states (34) have five or fewer indicators.

The three states with the lowest score (2 out of 10 possible indicators) were Georgia, Nebraska and New Jersey. New Hampshire had the highest score, at 8 out of 10.

"From antibiotic-resistant Superbugs to Salmonella to the seasonal flu, infectious diseases disrupt lives and communities," said Jeffrey Levi, PhD, executive director of TFAH. "Fighting these diseases requires constant vigilance. The bad news is that we found major gaps in the country's ability to prevent, control and treat outbreaks, leaving Americans at an unacceptable level of unnecessary risk."

The report delivers certain key findings and provides a series of recommendations for closing the gaps in infectious disease control and prevention.

Score Summary:

For the state-by-state scoring, states received one point for achieving an indicator or zero points if they did not achieve the indicator. Zero is the lowest possible overall score, 10 is the highest.

8 out of 10: New Hampshire
7 out of 10: Connecticut, Delaware, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island and Washington
6 out of 10: Colorado, D.C., Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Virginia
5 out of 10: Alaska, California, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont and Wisconsin
4 out of 10: Alabama, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Dakota, Ohio, Texas, Utah and West Virginia
3 out of 10: Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Montana, Nevada and Wyoming
2 out of 10: Georgia, Nebraska and New Jersey

To see Louisiana’s indicators, go here.

For the overall report, go here.


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