This week, the United Health Foundation released the America’s Health Rankings “2021 Health of Women and Children Report,” which highlights improvements, challenges and disparities in health and well-being of women and children across all 50 states.

Most notably, behavioral health measures for children highlighted significant challenges before and during the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • Anxiety among children ages 3-17 has risen 21% since 2017
  • Teen suicide has increased 26% since 2014, from 8.9 to 11.2 deaths per 100,000 adolescents. Among minorities, the teen suicide rate was 4.7 times higher among American Indian/Alaska Native adolescents than Black adolescents.

The report also found:

  • Increased frequent mental distress in women, increasing levels of obesity among women, and lack of physical activity among children.
  • Maternal mortality and maternal morbidity are rising, especially in certain states and among Black mothers.

Here in Nevada, the 2021 Women and Children Report finds:

  • An 18% increase in infant mortality from 5.1 to 6.0 deaths per 1,000 live births between 2012-2013 and 2017-2018.
  • Frequent mental distress increased 60% from 13.2% to 21.1% in women ages 18-44, between 2013-2014 and 2018-2019.
  • There was a 39% decrease in teen births, between 2013 and 2019, from 30.8 to 18.9 births per 1,000 females ages 15-19.
  • Children in poverty decreased 26% from 22.7% to 16.9% of children ages 0-17, between 2013 and 2019.

Additionally, the report found that Nevada ranks 50th in clinical care for children and 49th in clinical care for women. Other notable findings in the report include a low prevalence of female college graduates, a high prevalence of illicit drug use among women, as well as a low enrollment in early childhood education. Read more about the findings here.