Rural Americans Die Younger from Preventable Causes, CDC Study Finds 

United States: According to new federal data, rural Americans have a higher tendency to die early due to one out of the five leading causes of death, as compared to those living in urban areas. 

In the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report published on Tuesday, researchers went through various potent preventable deaths from 2010 to 2022, as ABC News reported. 

What more has the research found? 

According to the researchers, the major causes for rural Americans to die earlier are heart disease, cancer, unintentional injuries, stroke, and chronic lower respiratory disease before reaching the age of 80 with respect to their urban counterparts. 

Dr. Macarena Garcia, a senior health scientist in the CDC’s Office of Rural Health, observed that in the United States there is a well-known rural-urban gap, where residents from rural areas are more likely to be ill and have less income and miserable health indicators as compared to their counterparts from the urban areas, according to a defined press conference on May 18th. 

Furthermore, keeping in mind the US Census Bureau statistics, 20 percent of the population in the country is living in rural areas, and the rest are in urban areas. 

Rural Americans Die Younger from Preventable Causes, CDC Study Finds. Credit | Getty Images
Rural Americans Die Younger from Preventable Causes, CDC Study Finds. Credit | Getty Images

What have the previous research indicated? 

Prior studies have shown that rural Americans face as many health problems as a lack of access to adequate emergency and special care services and are more likely to be uninsured. Besides that, the rural residents suffer from high blood pressure and obesity more than the city citizens, as ABC News reported. 

The researchers pinpointed the early demise as an incident that occurred before attaining 80 years. The life span that was estimated in the USA in 2010 was 79 years old. 

The figure for prevented deaths from certain early causes was obtained by subtracting the number of expected deaths from the number of actual ones. 

According to the CDC reports, COVID-19 has been the third or fourth leading reason of death since 2020, where deaths from the virus were “excluded to maintain consistency and facilitate the assessment of trends over time.” 

Know more about the findings of the study 

By the end of 2020, 6.37 million Americans can be found within the population of individuals who died early as a consequence of the five leading risk factors that were studied during the 12-year time frame. 

Researchers discovered that about 6 out of 10 victims of such accidents as traffic accidents, falls, illegal shots, poisonings, overdose deaths, and drowning could be saved. 

Moreover, as per the report, 34 percent of strokes and heart disease deaths, as well as 26 percent of deaths caused by chronic lower respiratory were thought to be probably preventable. 

The findings were that rural counties’ rate of preventable deaths was equal to that of urban counties. 

For instance, as evident in the rural areas below the age of 80, 44 percent of the heart disease deaths that are potentially preventable were detected, and 33 percent in urban areas. Deaths due to unintentional injury and chronic lower respiratory disease are the causes of the early deaths of more than half in both rural and urban areas, and a good part of them are preventable, as ABC News reported. 

Among cancer deaths, the percentage of prevention is less than 20 percent in rural counties. 

Garcia said, “We have to remember that screening prevention services as well as treatment services are much more accessible in urban areas,” and, “So that means they are limited in rural areas. Sometimes people have to drive two or three hours to the nearest center that provides specialty care.” 

She added, “So that means people go without preventive services. People in rural areas likely have lower rates of screening and certainly have less access to treatment.”