About 'ZIP Code: The Hidden Vital Sign'

This August, ideastream launches a special series on place and health, called "ZIP Code: The Hidden Vital Sign."

Health leaders have long been saying that ZIP code matters more than genetic code when it comes to health. Where you live has a profound impact on your ability to make healthy choices for yourself and your family. Some in the field estimate that 90% of health emerges from our environmental and social circumstances, such as neighborhood safety, employment, poverty, health care access, transportation, food insecurity, air pollution, housing, and education. But it’s hard to see this in the abstract. That’s why the week of August 14-18 ideastream will zero in on specific regions to examine the driving factors behind poor health.

Travel with ideastream to counties, cities, and neighborhoods across Northeast Ohio to hear about some of the most pressing health problems and community conditions they face, how they compare to other areas, and what programs are working to address them. Data-driven reporting powered by the County Health Rankings from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, CWRU Center on Urban Poverty’s NEOCANDO database, and the CDC’s new 500 Cities Project, will offer new insight into how health is shaped more by community than by choice.

Tune in the week of August 14th for reporting from this special series on WCPN 90.3 FM, WVIZ/PBS and online, at ideastream.org/zipcode

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