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These Infectious Diseases Are a Concern for the U.S.

HIV, dengue fever and whooping cough pose problems, a new report says

December 18, 2013
by Shannon Firth
U.S. News & World Report

The U.S. may be one of the most powerful countries in the world, but when it comes to protecting their health, Americans may be more vulnerable than one might think.

"There's a whole host of diseases that we all just assume is a part of our past and they're actually reemerging as very much part of our present," says Dr. Jeffrey Levi, executive director of the nonprofit, nonpartisan Trust for America's Health (TFAH).

The organization Tuesday published a report card for all 50 states and Washington, D.C., analyzing 10 key indicators related to the treatment and prevention of infectious diseases, including HIV, seasonal flu and whooping cough.

On a scale of 1 to 10 -- with 10 being the highest positive ranking -- the majority of states scored 5 or lower. New Hampshire took the top rating with a score of 8. Georgia, Nebraska and New Jersey ranked lowest, each with a score of 3.

The purpose of the analysis, which relied on both publicly available and government data, is to use key findings to address the emergence and reemergence of specific infectious diseases.

U.S. News offers five key takeaways from the report:

 

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