According to the CDC (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) cancer and heart disease are the most common killers in the US. A new map created by two CDC researchers– Dr. Francis P. Boscoe and Eva Pradhan—reveals the most distinctive causes of death in each of the 50 states. The investigative pair created the map using the official List of 133 Selected Causes of Death published by the National Center for Health Statistics and CDC’s Wide-ranging Online Data for Epidemiologic Research from the year 2001 to 2010.
Boscoe says that in some cases, the most common causes of death are intuitive. He notes that boating accidents and plane crashes are the most common cause in Idaho and Alaska because certain locations in these two states are only accessible by boat or plane.
In mining states such as Kentucky, West Virginia and Pennsylvania, pneumoconiosis, lung diseases brought on by dust inhalation, is the most common cause of death. Death brought on by the flu is much more common in northern states like Wyoming, South Dakota, North Dakota and Maine than other states.
On the other hand, the most common cause of death is unexpected. For example, syphilis is the biggest killer in Louisiana yet only 22 people died from it in the decade analyzed. The state of Florida has a higher rate of HIV-caused fatalities than other states with a total of 15,000 deaths within the ten year period.
Finally, the new map may indicate cultural differences and/or public health issues across the country. In Connecticut and New York, the most distinctive cause of death is inflammatory diseases of female pelvic organs which could indicate issues with women’s healthcare in those states.
In Alabama and Tennessee the most common cause of death is listed as accidental discharge of firearms. In Arkansas and Arizona it is discharge of firearms with undetermined intent. Again, the cause of death in certain states could very well be related to local cultural mores and political attitudes.
CDC Map Shows Distinctive Causes Of Death In U.S.