News 12 at 11 o'clock / Wednesday, April 11, 2012
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- It's like taking the pulse or the temperature of our entire community, and so far, this check-up isn't going well. That's why two local hospitals are teaming up to help, but they need your input to do so.
The latest health numbers from our area show that we are not healthy.
University Hospital and Georgia Health Sciences Medical Center want to do something about it, but they need to hear from you first.
Joseph Logan uses a cane to walk after a crash nearly claimed his life.
"I was really injured bad," Logan said.
He also has diabetes, so you can bet a hospital visit comes fairly frequently for him.
"It got to where, 'Hey, good to see you again,'" he said.
Logan is one of thousands of people in our area with health needs.
Dr. Lucy Marion, dean of nursing at Georgia Health Sciences University, said, "We are in the South. We are in the stroke belt, we are all in the heart attack belt."
Richmond County is rated 122 out of 156 in the entire state, says Marilyn Bowcutt, senior VP at University Hospital.
They are numbers that are not comforting, but GHS Medical Center and University Hospital have teamed up to create a tool that shows you how healthy or unhealthy our area is.
Take obesity, for example, a major factor for health issues. About 27 percent of people in Columbia County, 31 percent in Aiken County and 33 percent of folks in Richmond County are obese. Doctors say the numbers are unacceptable.
With this assessment right at your fingertips, these health systems hope you can help reverse these stark numbers.
Because after all, "I tell you what, if it wasn't for nurses I don't know what I will do," Logan said.