Life Span in Cornwall Ontario Less than Ottawa? Local H1N1 Report Makes Claim – February 20, 2010

UPDATE  – We’ve updated this story as apparently the original quote in the original story may have been inaccurate.   We’ll try and arrange an interview with the Doctor to clarify the issue further.

A report in the Standard Free-Holder by David Nesseth suggests that Cornwall Ontario residents live seven less years than Ottawa residents.

“According to a 2007 Canadian Community Health Survey, the health unit’s catchment area has higher averages than the province for self-reported cases of anxiety, arthritis, asthma, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, dementia and high blood pressure, to name just a few.Local H1N1 hospitalization numbers, Roumeliotis said, were also well above the provincial average, with many locals, mostly youth, even winding up in Ottawa area hospitals.

Roumeliotis believes that social determinants of health play a large role in the local region’s health issues. He suggested literacy and education rates, as well as families’ financial status, can have long-term health effects on children from the area. “If you don’t have a good start, you’re going to end up with problems,” Roumeliotis said. “There is a seven year difference of life expectancy between here and Ottawa,” he told the council.”

This story we’ve linked to was in regard to H1N1 Virus and how much harder Cornwall has been hit than other communities in Ontario.   I would agree with Dr. Roumeliotis that education is a huge factor.   An example I’ve seen is fast food servers offering up bottled beverages by holding them at the top.   Any virus or bacteria on their hands is now on the drinking area of the container.     That’s just not a safe way to handle these items.

What do you think Cornwall?  Why is our life expectancy rate so allegedly low compared to Ottawa.   Do we not have enough medical services?  Is the quality of our services low?    Is it $20 per bag cigarettes?   What solutions do you suggest?

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  1. What do you get when you combine mass media and people with low to little education…. the stats above. People who don’t know better easily believe what they are told… in the case of H1N1…this city went nuts and rushed for the special elixer called a shot for a supposed outbreak.

  2. Author

    Hi Jason,

    Well to play Devil’s Advocate the government had to make the shot available as there was a potential liability issue. Also, if as advertised giving out the shots saved a lot of medical dollars treating people in emergency wards.

    Could you imagine how insane the system would be if 40% of the population came down with the flu at any given time?

    What we need is better preventative care in our system. We need GP’s. We need better access to basic health knowledge. You can’t just throw blame at the medical system. This is a societal issue.

  3. This article is very misleading. According to official Statistics Canada numbers, the life expectancy at birth for the Eastern Ontario Heatth Unit (EOHU) is 78.5 years compared to 80.4 years for the City of Ottawa Health Unit. The difference is only 1.9 years and not 7 years as per the article. Perhaps Dr Roumeliotis was misquoted?

  4. Author

    Hi Roger,

    Perhaps Dr. Roumeliotis will respond to your comment or we’ll have our Ace Journalist, Markus ask the question? If true it’s a major crisis issue. 7 years is an awful big difference for regions so close together.

  5. Atta boy Roger, you keep the numbers honest.

  6. Someone is lying, and I don’t think it Dr. Roumeliotis.

  7. Author

    So Willie, what exactly do you think someone is lying about?

  8. If someone from the country retires in the city to be closer to medical and other services, does this affect the numbers? I would find the data more reliable if they used people that have only lived in each city, and with common genetics.

  9. The doctor had said “several year difference”, not “seven year difference”.

  10. Could you kindly translate your website into German as I’m not so comfortable reading it in English? I’m getting tired of using Google Translate all the time, there is a handy WordPress plugin called like global translator which will render all your posts by default- this would make reading articleson your awesome blog even more enjoyable. Cheers mate, Education!

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