Death comes sooner in Appalachia. It comes much sooner in Eastern Kentucky
By Bill Estep
August 24, 2017 5:33 AM
The years of life Appalachian Kentucky residents lose to health maladies such as heart disease and cancer is 63 percent higher than the national average, according to a report released Thursday.
The news was not good in Eastern Kentucky and other parts of Appalachia on just about every indicator of health: heart disease deaths were 17 percent higher in Appalachia than the country as a whole; cancer deaths were 27 percent higher; stroke deaths were 14 percent higher; and the rate of deaths from poisoning, which mostly means from drug overdoses, was 37 percent higher.
Put all that together, and the years of potential life lost before age 75 — a measure of premature death — was 25 percent higher in Appalachia than in the U.S, the report found.