Report Identifies Top Sioux Falls Health Issues

SIOUX FALLS, S.D.-Health care industry professionals are trying to improve the quality of life in Sioux Falls. Over the past 15 months, through resident surveys and focus groups, a report was completed to come up with a clearer picture of what we can do better to improve our health.

“You know everyone deserves to live a long and healthy life in a safe environment. We believe that’s true in Sioux Falls as well,” said Jill Franken, Director of Sioux Falls Health Department.

Through an initiative with Live Well Sioux Falls, Avera, Sanford, and the Sioux Falls Health Department have partnered together to create a Community Health Needs Assessment to understand the health status of Sioux Falls.

“We’re trying to continue to design programs and services to meet our health needs. We need to understand the environment in which they work, they worship, go to school and spend their time,” said Dr. Mike Wilde, Vice President Medical Officer, Sanford Sioux Falls.

According to Mary Michaels with the Sioux Falls Public Health Department, where you live is a better indicator of your health than your genetic code.

“It’s everything from jobs and education to transportation and housing,” said Michaels.

The top health issues found include access to care, behavioral health and substance abuse, and chronic diseases.

“We have much work to do, but the report we are presenting today provides a valuable road map to guide as as we continue to improve the health of our community,” said David Flicek, President of Avera Mckennan Hospital.

The report also showed risk behaviors residents can change in their lives to improve their health including: tobacco, nutrition, physical activity, healthy weight and alcohol consumption.

“Research estimates that if 75 percent of Americans were working towards those five modifiable risk factors, the nation could save more than $600 billion a year in health care costs,” said Michaels.

This announcement also kicked off April being ‘Big Squeeze’ month in Sioux Falls. Folks are encouraged to check their blood pressure for chronic diseases like hypertension, which is known as the silent killer.

“What we continue to find is that only about a third of our residents who are getting screened as past of the big squeeze have normal blood pressure,” said Michaels.

The health partners say they’ll continue to work together to ensure a healthier Sioux Falls in the future.

Other notable findings included in the CHNA report include:

  • Sioux Falls still ranks near the bottom in the nation for fruit and vegetable consumption. Less than 15 percent are getting enough fruits and vegetables.
  • More than half of adults are physically active fewer than three days per week.
  • Among residents responding to the CHNA survey, 38 percent say they binge drink. National data on binge drinking shows an increase from 2016 to 2019.
  • The South Dakota opioid overdose mortality rate is 6 deaths per 100,000 population. The Minnehaha County rate is 7.5 deaths per 100,000 population (national rate is 14.1 deaths per 100,000 population).
  • The number of adults who smoke in the Sioux Falls MSA has decreased from 16.7 percent to 15.5 percent.

Click here: to view the full health assessment report.

Categories: Local News, News