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Amber Todd


The goal of this investigation is to analyze data that influences premature death rates in Virginian counties. Specifically, I am looking at how the rates compare between rural and urban Virginian counties in 2020. In addition, I am analyzing how the premature death rates correlates with low birthweights, with air pollution, with preventable hospital stays, and with children in poverty and see how these variables predict the variance in premature death rates by county. I am using data from the County Health Rankings website. They gathered their data via surveys, the National Vital Statistics System, the CDC health tracking network, and the US census database. The 2020 estimates for these variables were based on data from previous years ranging from 2014 to 2018. I will be using paired and unpaired t-tests, Pearson/Spearman correlations, and stepwise linear regression to analyze my data. Results: All Virginian counties were found to have a significant increase in their aggregate premature death rate from 2018 to 2020, increasing over a 1000 deaths per 100,000 hospitalizations (t=4.496, p<.001). The premature death rate for Virginian counties had significant positive correlations with low birthweights and preventable hospital stays.

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