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U.S. Failing to Meet Goals for Women's Health: Report
Date:12/9/2010

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, Dec. 9 (HealthDay News) -- The United States has failed to reach almost every goal set for women's health, a new report says.

Conducted by the National Women's Law Center and Oregon Health Sciences University (OHSU), the report -- based largely on federal objectives drawn from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Healthy People 2010 agenda -- is the fifth in a 10-year look at the status of women's health in this country. In this latest analysis, a satisfactory rating was only handed out on three of 26 measures of good health for women.

"If you look at the nation overall, the nation hasn't done that well," Dr. Michelle Berlin, vice chair of the report and associate director of the OHSU Center for Women's Health, said during a news conference on Wednesday.

The three goals that have been met throughout the country are the number of women receiving mammograms, the number of women getting screened for colorectal cancer and the number of women going for annual dental visits, Berlin said.

Since 2000, there has been some progress in reducing deaths from heart disease, stroke and breast and lung cancer. And, fewer women are smoking, the report found.

However, more women are obese and more suffer from high blood pressure and diabetes. Also, fewer women are getting Pap tests for cervical cancer, and the incidence of Chlamydia and binge drinking are on the increase, the report showed.

Berlin noted that these data also vary state-to-state, so that although some goals have been met nationally, individual states may be falling behind. "The range is pretty concerning," she said.

In fact, no state was given a overall satisfactory grade for women's health and only two states, Vermont and Massachusetts, got the next highest grade of "satisfactory minus." Thirty-seven states received an unsatisfactory grade, and 12 were given an F.

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