Diseases Of The Heart Leading Cause Of Death Locally According To New Report

Last Updated on June 17, 2017 3:59 pm

Alleghany, Ashe and Watauga Counties, NC — AppHealthCare has released the 2016 State of the County’s Health (SOTCH) Reports for Alleghany, Ashe and Watauga Counties. The 10-page reports include a summary of demographics, health indicators, and main causes of death in each county. Each SOTCH report also contains updates on the community’s top three health priorities, action plan projects, local initiatives and emerging trends.

The leading cause of death in Alleghany, Ashe and Watauga Counties continue to be diseases of the heart. Cancer, chronic lower respiratory diseases, and other unintentional injuries such as poisoning and motor vehicle accidents are among the other leading causes of death (North Carolina County Health Data Book, 2016).

AppHealthCare releases a SOTCH report each year between cycles of conducting a community health assessment. The community health assessment is a core function for each local health department in North Carolina in identifying and monitoring health needs, and taking action on the health priorities of the community. This summer, AppHealthCare will team up with Alleghany Memorial Hospital, Ashe Memorial Hospital and Appalachian Regional Healthcare Services to conduct the next community health assessment. A key component of the assessment is a community health opinion survey. The community health opinion survey will be distributed this July and August online and at area medical providers and businesses.

AppHealthCare is working to address the leading causes of death in Alleghany, Ashe and Watauga Counties by expanding access to critical services and developing community partnerships that encourage healthy behaviors. Some of those services include offering dental services (Alleghany and Ashe County locations), free nicotine replacement therapy to area residents through a partnership with the NC Quitline, chronic health case management, mental health and substance abuse screenings, and medical nutrition therapy.

To obtain a copy of the State of Health report, visit

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