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This blog series features “quick evidence bites” that highlight the connections between neighborhoods and health and the need for cross-sector solutions for sustained impacts. Tweet these facts and share your own @BHPNetwork #ZIPmatters.
Fact: Over 50% of U.S. premature deaths are attributable to non-medical factors. Yet less than 5% of public dollars spent on health is dedicated to such factors.
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Research has suggested that over 50% of US premature deaths can be attributed to preventable non-medical factors, specifically behavioral, environmental, and social conditions (collectively referred to as the Social Determinants of Health). Some research goes so far as to suggest that in fact only 10% of early mortality is due to medical factors (see chart below). In 2014, federal, state, and local governments spent over $3 trillion on healthcare, allocating less than 5% to behavioral, environmental, and social factors. By joining forces, the community development and health sectors can better address the non-medical factors to reduce premature deaths.
Read more: Check out this seminal article about the role of non-medical factors in determining one’s health and this related study. Read more about American Public Health Associations (APHA) efforts to support federal public health funding.