Healthcare access, quality and costs vary widely from one community to another, according to a report from the Comonwealth Fund.
Using 43 metrics, including percentage of insured adults and 30-day mortality rates for heart attack, Commonwealth Fund researchers assessed health system performance in 306 hospital referral regions across the country. St. Paul, Minn., Dubuque, Iowa, and Appleton, Wis., were among the top communities overall, while Shreveport, La., and Jackson, Miss, were ranked among the bottom 10.
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It's the first report from the New York-based not-for-profit to look specifically at local health systems. The Commonwealth Fund released national scorecard reports in 2006, 2008 and 2011, as well as state-by-state health system reports in 2007 and 2009.