The numbers were compiled by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and are listed online at http://www.countyhealthrankings.org.
Joyce Clem, moderator of Tuesday’s program, handed out a listing of statistics and where the county is ranked in health numbers in Tennessee. Several of the statistics resulted in some debate.
Several disagreed that Bradley County should be ranked at 18 percent in the number of residents who are uninsured. The percentage, for residents under 65 (Medicare age), showed a comparison to Tennessee’s 16 percent and the national benchmark of 11 percent.
Bradley County is shown as the 18th healthiest county among the state’s 95 counties. Some of health officials felt this was understandable, considering the amount of recent growth the county has received.
Joyce Vanderpool of Going Respectfully Against Addition Abuse (GRAAB), emphasized that in some affluent communities across the nation growth has led to a decrease in positive numbers ... especially with drug and alcohol abuse.
Some other statewide statistics included mortality (14th in the state), morbidity (35th), health factors (19th), health behaviors (12th), clinical care (25th), social and economic factors (28th), and physical environment (62nd).
Bradley County is 54th in the teen birth rate for young ladies between 15 and 19.
Premature deaths were listed at 8,432 for 100,000 residents. Poor (or fair) health was 19 percent, poor physical health days at 4.7 and poor mental health days at 4.4. Low birth weight is 8.2 percent.
Adult smoking is 24 percent, adult obesity 29 percent, physical inactivity is 31 percent and excessive drinking 7 percent. The county’s motor vehicle crash death rate is 19 per 100,000.
There is a primary care physician for every 1,255 residents in Bradley County. Diabetes screening is at 89 percent and mammography screening at 63 percent.
Social and economic factors include a questionable figure of 78 percent, although Cleveland and Bradley County school systems have greatly reduced their dropout rates.
Fifty-five percent of the county’s residents have some college, while there is 9 percent unemployment, 25 percent of our children living in poverty, 20 percent have inadequate social support, and 31 percent of children live in a single-parent home.
The county is fortunate with a seventh place for air pollution-ozone days and ninth in access to recreational facilities.
The statistics show 19 percent of local residents have limited access to healthy foods.
Bradley County’s population is listed at 97,710 of Tennessee’s 6,296,254. Twenty-three percent of the county’s residents are below 18 years of age, 14 percent 65 or older, 51 percent females and 34 percent rural.
There is one mental health provider in the county for every 19,329 residents, while the state has one provider for every 10,332. The annual cost of health care is $9,984 and $10,072 in the state. Nineteen percent of the residents of Bradley County say they could not see a doctor due to cost. There is one dentists for every 2,833 residents.
The median household income in Bradley County is $38,558, 40 percent of our children are eligible for the free lunch program, 12 percent of residents are illiterate, we’re No. 4 in the state’s homicide rate and 80 percent have access to healthy food.
After discussing the numbers, Vanderpool said. “We’re on the good side of Tennessee’s 95 counties.” On the list, Williamson County is No. 1, and Grundy County 95th.
Other Health Council notes:
- Participants discussed last weekend’s Teen Conference by the Boys & Girls Clubs, which was combined with Cleveland State Community’s Multicultural Fair.
They talked about what the Council can do with the community’s teens, and decided to have a meeting of the Teen Committee at 11 a.m. Tuesday, May 22, prior to the next Health Council luncheon at SkyRidge.
- Saturday in Healthy Kids Day at the Cleveland Family YMCA, and the Council is considering having a table at the event from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
- Vanderpool reminded the audience that this is “Take Back Drugs Week” at the Bradley County Justice Center. Old or no-longer used drugs can be discarded to proper authorities.
- The next Bradley County Health Council meeting will be at noon Tuesday, May 22, at SkyRidge.