Study: Americans Are Healthier But Lag Behind Health Advances In Other Countries

(Credit: Thinkstock)

(Credit: Thinkstock)

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – According to a new study, although progress has been made in improving the health of Americans, our country still lags behind advances in other wealthy nations.

The Global Burden of Disease study, done by 488 researchers in 50 countries between 1990-2010, looked at the number of early deaths and disability caused by over 250 diseases and injuries across the globe.

The study found that the overall health of the U.S. population and life expectancy has increased, but morbidity and chronic disability now account for almost half of the country’s health burden.

Researchers say the U.S. spends the most on healthcare, but still lags behind other high-income countries in life expectancy and other health outcome measures and lacks universal health coverage. They also found that, although overall life expectancy has increased, in some counties it has decreased over the past two decades, especially for women.

According to the report, the biggest causes of early death in America are heart disease, lung cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases and road injuries; while the biggest causes of disability are depression, low back pain and other musculoskeletal disorders.

To see the full study visit: jama.jamanetwork.com.

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