Health Advocacy Group Charts Diabetes-Related Deaths in State
About 82 deaths per 100,000 people in the state are diabetes-related, with legislative districts in Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties and the Central Valley having the highest rates of such deaths, according to a California Center for Public Health Advocacy study released Wednesday, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. Researchers examined state death records between 1996 and 2000 and found that more than 115,000 residents, mostly adults, died from diabetes during that period. The study also found that legislative districts with the highest prevalence of overweight and physically unfit children had the highest diabetes-related death rates. Obesity and physical inactivity have been linked to type 2 diabetes, the most common form of the disease. "It's up to the elected officials and their constituents to develop the kind of policies that will encourage, that will allow, children and adults to eat healthy foods, be physically active and get the kind of health care that they need," Dr. Harold Goldstein, executive director of the public health advocacy center, said. Sen. Deborah Ortiz (D-Sacramento) said she welcomed the study as a sign that the Legislature has not effectively addressed the rise of type 2 diabetes, adding that many legislative efforts to combat obesity are "undercut" by the fast food industry and other industries, according to the Union-Tribune (Sanchez, San Diego Union-Tribune, 2/26). The report is available online.This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.