Local & Regional
1:08 pm
Tue June 3, 2014

Oklahoma Ranks 47th for Seniors' Health

United Health Foundation ranked Oklahoma 47th in the nation for senior health measures in 2014.
United Health Foundation ranked Oklahoma 47th in the nation for senior health measures in 2014.
Credit File Photo

Oklahoma ranks ahead of only Mississippi, Louisiana and Kentucky in senior health for 2014.

United Health Foundation found the state’s seniors have a high level of inactivity and receive a low percentage of recommended hospital care.

Jan Figart with the Community Service Council in Tulsa said local health agencies have good plans to improve seniors’ health, "but there's no new monies set aside for this in order to make the improvements that would be necessary to really have a meaningful population effect."

The rankings noted nearly 37 percent of Oklahoma seniors are physically inactive, there's a significant geriatrician shortfall and the state has the nation’s highest prevalence of hip fractures. Dr. Marshall Dawer with United Health Care says there were some positive findings, however.

"A low prevalence of chronic alcohol use, there was a high percentage of dedicated healthcare providers, which is good, that's being addressed," Dawer said. "And, interestingly, very high flu vaccination coverage, which is a good thing."

United Health Foundation used 48 measures to determine the rankings. Oklahoma ranked in the bottom half for all but six. The top state this year was Minnesota.

The foundation ranked Oklahoma 49th last year.