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How More Education Could Save A Half-Million American Lives

Posted on 08/07/2015

How More Education Could Save A Half-Million American Lives
LA Johnson | NPR

In a July 08, 2015 nprED blog post External link opens in new window or tab, author Anya Kamenetz writes about findings from a study released by researchers at the University of Colorado, New York University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

"They found that if every adult high school dropout in the 2010 population had a GED or a regular diploma, 145,243 deaths could be averted."

"Similarly, 110,068 deaths could be avoided for that year if every adult who already had some college finished their bachelor's degrees. And if everyone in the population got a bachelor's degree, the total untimely deaths would be reduced by 554,525. To be clear, says Virginia Chang, an associate professor of public health and of population health at NYU and a co-author of the study, 'We're not going to make everyone have a BA all of a sudden.' But as a thought experiment, the impact is stark.

The connection between education levels and health has been well-documented, and, this study found, it is growing in recent generations.

"The researchers examined the results of the National Health Interview Survey, which for decades has been the main government survey assessing the health of the civilian population. The researchers were able to tease out the effects of levels of education on various causes of death."

Source: nprED blog External link opens in new window or tab.