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New state-by-state report shows gaps in health strongly linked to education levels

By Kirsten Michener

Adults with less education are less likely to be in very good health than college graduates in every state of the US, and adults in every state fall short of the level of good health that every American should be able to achieve, says a new report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Commission to Build a Healthier America. 

Paula Braveman, MD, MPH, UCSF professor of family and community medicine, and director, Center on Social Disparities in Health, a lead author of the study, says the findings show that focusing on education is important for reducing health shortfalls.  The report is the first to rank states on differences in adult health based on levels of education, and shows, for example, that adults who have not graduated from high school are more than 2.5 times as likely to be in less than very good health as college graduates.

News release from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation: 
http://www.rwjf.org/newsroom/product.jsp?id=42418

Full report: http://www.commissiononhealth.org/StateByStateData.aspx