Central California Center for Health And Human Services
Health in the Heartland: The Crisis Continues
Central California's San Joaquin Valley is one of the largest rural and agricultural areas in the nation and is also one of the most culturally diverse. California's San Joaquin Valley is the southern portion of the Central Valley and stretches almost 300 miles from just south of Sacramento to north of Los Angeles. It is bounded by the Coastal and Sierra Nevada mountain ranges, and it comprises 17% of California's landmass.
Approximately 3.3 million persons live in the eight counties that make up the San Joaquin Valley: Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, Merced, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, and Tulare. The Valley's agricultural industry is valued at over $15 billion annually, making it the richest agricultural Valley in the world. Although the Valley enjoys agricultural riches, many of its residents endure very serious health problems.
The dire health conditions of the residents of the San Joaquin Valley were first outlined in Hurting in the Heartland: Access to Care in the San Joaquin Valley (HIH; Diringer, Ziolkowski, & Paramo, 1996). Eight years later, this report, Health in the Heartland: The Crisis Continues, provides an update on the health status of the residents in the San Joaquin Valley and documents the changes that have taken place over the intervening years. Current information is provided to enable policymakers, health providers, and community members to understand the critical health issues in the Valley and devise strategies for overcoming the barriers to improving health status.
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Salud en el Corazón del Valle: La Crisis Continúa
Diringer, J., Curtis, K. A., Paul, C. M., Deveau, D. R. (2004).
Fresno: Universidad del Estado de California, Fresno.
(Funding by The California Endowment)