It’s a common question: Where should public health departments allocate their limited resources to address the most pressing health issues?
The Polis Center, the Regenstrief Institute, the IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health, and the Marion County Public Health Department have embarked on a project to help answer this question. Funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, this innovative method for using health data could change the way decisions are made by public health professionals.
Report published July 15, 2015
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Two communities that are both situated within the Indianapolis metropolitan area and separated by only 28 miles are in reality worlds apart. One sits in a northeastern suburb of Indianapolis. Its residents have a life expectancy of 83.7 years, rivaling the top-ranking countries of the world, Switzerland (83 years) and Japan (84 years). Taking a drive from that community along I-465 and I-70 into the city, life expectancy drops off – to 78.9 years, then to 74.2 years – until you arrive in the second community, situated within the urban core directly south of Monument Circle. Its residents have a life expectancy of 69.4 years, similar to countries like Uzbekistan (69 years), Bangladesh (70 years), and Iraq (70 years).