A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that while the overall health of Americans has improved over the last decade, little progress has been made in reducing racial and ethnic disparities for most health indicators surveyed. The report, which took a look back at the CDC's Healthy People initiative launched in 2000, found progress in 71 percent of 28 health objectives identified by the CDC.


However, there were reductions in health disparities for only 7 percent of the 28 objectives; disparities increased for 13 percent of the objectives and remained constant for the remaining 80 percent.

Among the other findings:

  • Between 2000-01 and 2006-07, U.S. life expectancy rose by a full year to 77.8 years.
  • Mortality rates for several specific conditions targeted by the Healthy People initiative have declined since 2000, including rates for breast cancer, prostate cancer, heart disease, strokes and diabetes-related deaths.
  • Americans in urban or metropolitan areas scored higher on 71 percent of the 28 health objectives surveyed when compared with Americans living in rural or nonmetropolitan areas.
  • For children 6-11 years of age, obesity rates rose 54.5 percent; for adolescents, those rates rose 63.5 percent; and the proportion of adults who are obese rose by 48 percent.

Click here to access the entire, 662-page report.