LISTEN LIVE

Report: Florida Improves 'Health Security' Ranking

May 8, 2019

Florida has improved its ranking in an annual report that rates states on how prepared they are for public health emergences.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation analyzed which states are leaving themselves at risk to infectious disease, antibiotic resistance, terrorism, weather emergencies, or other threats in the "2019 National Health Security Preparedness Index" report.

Alonzo Plough, Vice President for Research-Evaluation-Learning and Chief Science Officer for the Foundation, said Florida is now in line with the national average health security level.

"From 2013, the figure was 5. 8 on the index, so you're now up 6.7. That's almost a full increase by one point so that's good,” Plough said.

States are ranked on a 10-point scale.

Florida's biggest threats from 2012 to 2017 were coastal weather, tropical storms and hurricanes, and lightning - when it comes to the number of deaths.

Florida exceeded the national average in the categories of Health Security Surveillance, Incident and Information Management, and Environmental and Occupational Health.

"Florida is well known for having very good state level emergency response, but you can improve in many areas,” Plough said.

Florida is well below the national average in the categories of Community Planning and Engagement, Healthcare Delivery, and Countermeasure Management.

For the full report, click here.