The good news is, Arizona did climb a little bit higher overall. The bad news is, our state is still in the lower half of the rankings checking in at number 32 in the recent Commonwealth Fund “Scorecard on State Health System Performance.”
According to the report – states are ranked “on more than 40 measures of health system performance in five broad areas: health care access, quality, avoidable hospital use and costs, health outcomes, and health care equity. In reviewing the data, four key themes emerged:
- There was more improvement than decline in states’ health system performance.
- States that expanded Medicaid saw greater gains in access to care.
- Premature death rates crept up in almost two-thirds of states.
- Across all measures, there was a threefold variation in performance, on average, between top- and bottom-performing states, signifying opportunities for improvement.”
The 2017 scorecard measures changes between 2013 and 2015, during which health insurance coverage was expanded under the ACA. The report found states that expanded Medicaid witnessed the largest increases in care access and insurance gains. However, not all health indicators were improved, as premature death rates rose slightly in nearly two-thirds of the states.
The report found on average the highest ranked states performed three times better across all measures than the lowest ranked states.
Arizona is one of the state’s that expanded medicaid and we did climb four spots in the rankings. Our state scored highest in the ‘Avoidable Hospital Use and Costs’ measure coming in at number 7. However, Arizona ranked 47th in ‘Prevention and Treatment’ and 45th in ‘Health Care Access.’
You can dig much deeper into Arizona’s data by visiting our state’s performance page on the Commonwealth website by clicking here or on the picture below.
Once you have a chance to look at the numbers….let us know what you think. While it is encouraging that Arizona improved its overall rank, we need to find new ways to move the health needle even more in our state. How can we help push Arizona into the top 20 the next time these rankings come out? Working together to find solutions to the health issues we face will help us not only crack the top 20, but it will also help us one day reach our of making Arizona the Healthiest State in the Nation!