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Missoula Measures - Health



Why this section?

Health is not simply the absence of disease. A broader definition is "the blending of physical, emotional, social, intellectual, and spiritual resources as they assist in mastering the developmental tasks necessary to enjoy a satisfying and productive life." Payne & Hahn 1992

Public health focuses on what we, as a society, do collectively to assure conditions in which people can be healthy. It must be kept in mind that some Missoulians are more challenged than others and experience illness, difficulty and death at higher levels.

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Life expectancy

Life expectancy is the average number of years people born in a given year are expected to live based on a set of age-specific death rates. At the beginning of the 20th century, life expectancy at birth was 47.3 years. Fortunately, life expectancy has dramatically increased over the past 100 years (see figure 1). Today, the average life expectancy at birth is nearly 77 years

Figure 1. Past and projected female and male life expectancy at birth, United States, 1900-2050

Figure 1. Past and projected female and male life expectancy at birth, United States, 1900-2050

Life expectancy for persons at every age group has also increased during the past century. Based on today's age-specific death rates, individuals aged 65 years can be expected to live an average of 18 more years, for a total of 83 years. Those aged 75 years can be expected to live an average of 11 more years, for a total of 86 years.

Source: Healthy People 2020.

Leading causes of death

Following are graphs showing the top 10 leading causes of death as a percentage of all deaths in the United States, 1900 and 1997.

graph preventable causes of death

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Leading Causes of Death, US


Relates websites

National Behavior Risk Factor Surveillance Survey Trends Data

For extensive background on National Public Health Status of this topic and many others, Healthy People 2020.

Montana Health Statistics by County - MSU Rural Health

Links to health data, statistics and information from many national sources.


Questions, feedback, suggestions?

This website is managed and updated by Lorena Hillis at Missoula City-County Health Dept.


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