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Person Analyzing Statistics


St. Louis MSA Health Stats:
A Community Scorecard for Commercial Populations

Midwest Health Initiative (MHI), a regional health improvement collaborative, has recently released its 2023 community scorecard, which summarizes measures of population health, health care utilization, and cost for services provided to commercially insured St. Louisans in 2022. Published annually, this resource aids community leaders in identifying areas of focus for health improvement of the population and serves to track trends in population health over time.

At the request of a St. Louis employer, MHI explored cancer prevalence in its claims dataset to help employers benchmark cancer rates among their employee population. Based on positive feedback, there is now a Cancer Prevalence section included in the scorecard. In addition to tracking total cancer prevalence, this section also includes prevalence for skin, breast, and lung cancer. Skin cancer is highest among these three at 0.56% in 2022, which is down from 0.76% in 2019. Although MHI’s dataset suggests a declining trend in prevalence for all three cancer types, this may be due to fewer people receiving screening and, therefore, being diagnosed. Check here for the American Cancer Society’s guidelines for early detection of cancer.  

Due to the alarming news in a recent Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America report: that St. Louis is the top city in the United States for asthma-related deaths, a metric was added. The asthma medication ratio is a quality metric used to assess the number of patients with asthma that use a controller medication more than other asthma medications, such as a rescue inhaler. A higher value indicates that more of the population has well-controlled asthma based on medication use. In 2022, 4.8% of the commercially insured population in St. Louis was treated for Asthma or COPD. Of those with asthma, 83.9% used a controller medication more often than another asthma medication. This percent has increased slightly from 81.2% in 2019. Even if you or a loved one regularly fills their controller inhaler prescription, that does not mean the inhaler is being used correctly. To ensure effective delivery of the medication, correct asthma device use is necessary. Review the steps for using a variety of asthma devices here.

For a detailed look at these measures and others for the St. Louis region, view the full 2023 St. Louis Health Stats community scorecard by clicking on the image or button above.

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