Mayor Menino Releases 2010 Health of Boston Report
Mortality rates continue to decline, fewer drug and alcohol deaths
Fewer Boston residents are dying of cancer, heart disease, injuries, and stroke, four of the five leading causes of death in the city, and Asian residents in Boston have the highest average life expectancy of any racial or ethnic group, according to the new Health of Boston report released today by Mayor Menino.
The 399-page report prepared by the Boston Public Health Commission contained plenty of good news about the health of Boston residents: Fewer substance abuse deaths, high rates of cancer screening, fewer teen pregnancies, fewer adults smokers and salmonella cases, and the near- disappearance of children in Boston with elevated lead levels.
But serious challenges remain. The report found that Boston’s black and Latino residents continue to experience higher levels of chronic disease, mortality, and poorer health outcomes compared to white residents. In 2008, the asthma hospitalization rate for black and Latino children was more than three times the rate for Asian children and four times the rate for white children. That same year, the diabetes hospitalization rate for black and Latino residents was about four times the rate for Asians and whites. For Boston’s black residents the health inequities begin early in life and persist throughout the individual’s lifespan: In 2008, the black infant mortality rate was more than four times the white infant mortality rate, and black residents had the shortest average life expectancy.
8/9/10 As the Massachusetts legislature concluded its 2009-2010 Formal Session, more than 25 important initiatives from my legislative package were sent to Governor Patrick to be signed into law. While I am proud of all of these legislative accomplishments, I want to highlight a few initiatives that will have a significant impact on our city and our residents. Working with the legislature, we successfully advocated for bills that will reform our CORI system, prevent foreclosures, reduce prescription drug abuse and fraud, and improve insurance coverage for autism. I congratulate the Governor and legislature on a successful session and thank them for their dedication to these important issues.