Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Life After the American Community Survey?

I am very concerned how federal funding for socioeconomic programs is going to be distributed equitably without relevant, current,  and reliables statistical information….

From the 22 May 2012 article at Stateline Daily

The U.S. Senate is expected to vote next month on an appropriations bill that could end the U.S. Census Bureau’s survey of state and local population, income, health and other data. Known as the American Community Survey, the federally funded program continuously samples about 3.5 million households each year to produce crucial data used to divvy some $400 billion in government money to states and localities, according to the Census Bureau.

Medicaid is the biggest federal program that relies on American Community Survey data to shift funding when states’ average incomes rise or fall. At about $270 billion in federal funding and nearly a quarter of state budgets, the federal-state health insurance program for low-income people uses the survey’s income data to determine federal allocations that can have huge impacts on state budgets.

Allocation of education grants, highway money and other social services funding also rely on the data.  States also use the information to allocate state money to county and local governments. So far, it is unclear what data the federal government would use to allocate billions in grant money, if the survey is discontinued…

May 23, 2012 Posted by | Public Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Census Bureau Releases New Set of 5-Year American Community Survey Estimates

Logo of the American Community Survey, a proje...

Image via Wikipedia

Estimates Provide Detailed Look at Every Community Nationwide

From the US Census press release

The U.S. Census Bureau today released findings from the American Community Survey — the most relied-on source for detailed, up-to-date socio-economic statistics covering every community in the nation every year — for the combined years from 2006 to 2010.

Consisting of about 11 billion individual estimates and covering more than 670,000 distinct geographies, the five-year estimates give even the smallest communities timely information on more than 40 topics, such as educational attainment, income, occupation, commuting to work, language spoken at home, nativity, ancestry and selected monthly homeowner costs.

Visitors to the Census Bureau website can find their community’s estimates in the <American FactFinder> database.

“These estimates are ideal for public officials to use to make key decisions,” Census Bureau Director Robert Groves said. “School boards will find them helpful in forecasting demand for classroom space, teachers and workforce training programs, and they will be a tremendous asset to planners in identifying traffic concerns and building roads and transit systems to ease commutes. Local governments will also find them useful in forecasting needs for services such as police and fire protection.”

Today’s release is based on completed interviews with almost 2 million housing units each year from 2006 through 2010. By pooling several years of survey responses, the American Community Survey can generate detailed statistical portraits of smaller geographies. The Census Bureau issues new sets of these five-year estimates every year, permitting users to track trends in even the smallest of areas over time.

Two Briefs Using the Five-Year Estimates

In addition to the estimates released in the 940 detailed tables through American FactFinder, the Census Bureau is also releasing today two five-year ACS briefs, which are short, topic-based reports that analyze statistics for a wide range of topics. These new five-year briefs join the series previously only using one-year data and estimates. The five-year briefs take advantage of the very small geography and groups that can only be estimated with five years of data. A complete list of all released Briefs is accessible here: <http://www.census.gov/acs/www/data_documentation/2010_acs_briefs/>.

Native North American Language Speakers Concentrated in a Handful of Counties

Sixty-five percent of Native North American language speakers lived in just three states, Alaska, Arizona and New Mexico. Nine counties within these states contained half the nation’s Native American language speakers. Apache County in Arizona had 37,000 speakers of a Native American language, making it the highest in the nation. McKinley County, N.M., had the second most speakers at 33,000. Together, about 20 percent of all Native American language speakers in the nation lived in these two counties.

The most commonly spoken Native North American language was Navajo, with more than 169,000 people speaking this language nationally. The number of Navajo speakers was nearly nine times larger than the second and third most commonly spoken languages of Yupik and Dakota, with each having about 19,000 speakers. Although the majority of Native North American language speakers resided in an American Indian and Alaska Native area, only 5 percent of people living in an American Indian and Alaska Native area spoke a Native North American language.

More than One-in-Five Live in “Poverty Areas”

People living in poverty tend to be clustered in certain neighborhoods rather than being evenly distributed across geographic areas. About 67 million people across the nation, or 23 percent of the population, lived in “poverty areas” — that is, census tracts with poverty rates of 20 percent or more. Among states, the percentage ranged from 46 percent in Mississippi to 5 percent in New Hampshire. In 15 states and the District of Columbia, more than one-quarter of the population resided in poverty areas.

Of the 10 million people residing in tracts where poverty was especially prevalent (poverty rates of 40 percent or more), 43 percent were white, 38 percent were black, 3 percent were Asian, 11 percent were some other race, and 2 percent reported two or more races.

Individuals residing in tracts with poverty rates of 40 percent or more were less likely to have completed high school, to work year-round, full time and to own a home, and were more likely to be living in a female-householder family and to be receiving food stamps than individuals living in tracts with low poverty rates (poverty rates of less than 13.8 percent).

 

December 9, 2011 Posted by | Public Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Some New Health Related US Demographic Resources

Logo for the 2010 United States Census.

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From a 9 August 2011 Health Information Literacy – For Health and Well Being blog item

First Results from the 2010 Census
http://www.prb.org/pdf11/reports-on-america-2010-census.pdf
Initial report from the 2010 Census identifying population change in rural and metro areas. Includes statistics on the increased diversity and ethnicity in the U.S.

Geography of Need: Identifying Human Service Needs in Rural America
http://www.rupri.org/Forms/HeflinMiller_GeogNeed_June2011.pdf
Uses American Community Survey five year average county-level data to compare the type and degree of human service needs in metropolitan versus non-metropolitan counties.

State of the States
http://frac.org/map/
State profiles of these Federal Food Programs: Demographics, Poverty and Food Insecurity; Federal Nutrition Programs; and State Economic Security Policies.
[Rural Assistance Center Human Services Update]

 

 

August 16, 2011 Posted by | Educational Resources (High School/Early College(, health AND statistics | , , | Leave a comment

   

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