Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

September 18, 2013

Report: W.Va. lagging on health care for poor


Associated Press

CHARLESTON — A private foundation’s report says West Virginia isn’t doing a good job of delivering health care services for low-income residents.

The Commonwealth Fund released a report Wednesday that ranks West Virginia tied for 41st among the states.

The New York and Washington, D.C.-based organization looked at 30 different indicators in four categories.

While West Virginia did a better-than-average job in providing appropriate preventive care screenings and treatment for low-income residents, it was average for health-care access and affordability, and near the bottom in promoting healthy lifestyles and avoiding unnecessary hospital use.

The report finds big gaps between the highest- and lowest-performing states. For instance, low-income adults in West Virginia are far more likely to lose six or more teeth to decay or disease compared to Connecticut, Hawaii and Utah.