Strike up the band, get the ticker tape ready for the parade " Oklahoma has improved its health rating. This calls for a celebration. You bring the doughnuts, we'll bring the booze and "¦ oh, what now?
While Oklahoma has indeed improved its health rating in the U.S., according to a report in the Tulsa World, our standing is not exactly parade-worthy. Up four places from last year, the Sooner State now comes in at No. 43. Yes, out of 50. But, hey, last year we were No. 47, so that's something, at least.
The United Health Foundation's 2008 report found that better public health funding and a drop in binge drinking helped contribute to the improvement. Also helping was an increase in immunizations and a reduction in infectious disease cases. Not helping was the continued prevalence of ciggie-loving fatties.
"While we are pleased with the new state health ranking, we are also determined to overcome those challenges keeping our state from achieving even more significant health improvements," state Health Commissioner Dr. Michael Crutcher reportedly said.
And, according to the World, there's still a long way to go. When compared to the state's standing in a similar 1990 report, Oklahoma has actually increased the number of cancer deaths, the percentage of kids living in poverty and the prevalence of obesity (up 148 McPoints!).
But, we here at CFN (which, we should probably consider changing to "Grilled Tofu News" if we want to help make a difference) are trying this new thing called being positive. We know, it's probably a fad that won't sustain itself in the long run, but we're giving it a go.
Anyway, being positive, we say hoorah, Oklahoma! Last year, there were only three other states that we could make fun of behind their backs, but now there are seven. Seven!
Call us dreamers, but maybe next year there'll be 10.