The Anomalous Health Status of Texas Border Counties

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Abstract of Journal Article -- November 2003

By Richard W. Homan, MD, MA

The health status of Texas border counties is anomalous in that the combination of poor health care services, low socioeconomic status, and low education rate does not result in the expected increase in age-adjusted mortality rate and shortened life expectancy. The anomaly appears to be due largely to the combination of a high Hispanic population density in this region, specifically Mexican-Americans, and to the phenomenon of Hispanic longevity. The latter is considered to be based on a variety of possible cultural factors. In the face of continuing escalations in the cost of health care, further definition of what those factors are and how they could be incorporated into the delivery of health care in our state should be a priority for state health policy.

November 2003 Texas Medicine Contents
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