New health study illustrates the state of Yates County residents overall health status

A child from Rushville’s 14544 ZIP code born today will live nearly four years longer than a child from Dundee’s 14837 ZIP code, a new county-specific report from Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency (FLHSA) reveals.

ZIP code 14544 has an estimated life expectancy of 79.6 years at birth, as compared to 75.9 years for ZIP code 14837, according to the 18-page Yates County Health Profile, which is available in print and online at www.flhsa.org/publications.

“Where you live can significantly affect your health, your health behaviors and eventually your health outcomes,” said Albert Blankley, director of research and analytics for FLHSA. “People may be close geographically, but their health outcomes often are worlds apart.”

Neighborhood factors such as high smoking rates, a lack of access to healthy food and exercise opportunities, and unhealthy housing can significantly reduce life expectancies.

Yates County’s 2016-2018 health improvement plan focuses on reducing obesity and substance abuse and increasing access to chronic disease prevention and management and mental health training.

In other findings, the FLHSA health profile notes that:

•  Yates County residents reported lower rates of fast food and sugary drink consumption, as compared to upstate New Yorkers in general.

• Fewer Yates County residents report having done leisure time physical activity in the past 30 days (64 percent) as compared to other upstate New Yorkers (74 percent).

• Fewer Yates County residents smoke (14 percent) than upstate New York residents in general (17 percent). However, Yates County residents have higher rates of premature death due to conditions linked with smoking, such as chronic lower respiratory disease, heart attacks, and cancer.

• One in 11 Yates County residents (9.2 percent) report having 14 or more poor mental health days in the past month, which is less than the upstate New York average of 11.5 percent.

Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency has tracked county data for decades, but this is the first year the agency has produced individual county profiles.

“The profiles are designed to be easy to read and understand, with maps, data graphs and icons that bring the information to life,” said Catie Kunecki, regional planner and analyst.

Kunecki noted that FLHSA will maintain updated county health data on its website and intends to publish updated versions of the report in the future.

About FLHSA

Founded in 1974, Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency is one of the nation’s oldest and most effective regional health planning organizations. Located in Rochester’s Neighborhood of the Arts, the agency serves the nine-county Finger Lakes region. The organization brings together health care providers, insurers, consumers and other partners to find common ground on the most pressing health challenges. Using the region’s most comprehensive health data, together we hammer out strategies for better care, smarter spending and healthier people. Learn more at www.flhsa.org.