Dear Care for Crash Victims Community Members:
Elections do have consequences. Life or death consequences.
One can grade the performance of care for crash victims in each State and the national average. I used 2010 data on crash fatalities per 100,000 population for each State.
Source: NHTSA Data on crash fatalities by State in 2010, Table 110 in NHTSA Report 811659 attached.
I categorized State Grades as follows:
A = 0 to 5 fatalities per 100,000 populationB = 5 to 10 C = 10 to 15D = 15 to 20F = >20 fatalities per 100,000 population
National average for 2010 was 10.63 = C
In attached Spreadsheet Ranking the States, I graded each State and used current NYTimes 538 blog map for identifying in Red (Republican leaning States). Source: http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/
Fatality rates in Red States averaged a grade of D, while Blue States averaged a grade of B.
A total of 12,123 Americans died of crash injuries in 2010 (latest data available) in the 19 Red States.
Then I looked up how many medical doctors held office in this past Congress, their State Grade caring for crash victims, and their political affiliation.
Below are the elected officials that were medically trained (and presumably took the Hippocratic Oath), their political affiliation, and their State Grade for Care for Crash Victims.
Medically Trained Senate Incumbents
- Tom Coburn (R, Republican), Oklahoma, family physician and ob-gyn Grade D
- John Barrasso (R, Wyoming), orthopedic surgeon New Senator Grade F
- Rand Paul, (R, Kentucky), ophthalmologist Grade D
Medically Trained House Incumbents
- John Boustany ( R, Louisiana), cardiovascular surgeon Grade D
- John Fleming (R, Louisiana), family physician Grade D
- Bill Cassidy (R, Louisiana), gastroenterologist Grade D
- Tom Price, (R, Georgia), orthopedic surgeon Grade C
- Paul Broun (R, Georgia), family physician Grade C
- Phil Gingrey(R,Georgia), Ob-Gyn Grade C
- Ron Paul (R, Texas), Ob-Gyn Grade C
- Michael Burgess(R, Texas), Ob-Gyn Grade C
- David “Phil” Roe (R, Tennessee), Ob-Gyn Grade D
- Jim McDermott (D, Washington), psychiatrist Grade B
Medically Trained New House members
- Larry Bucshon (R, Indiana), thoracic surgeon Grade C
- Andy Harris (R, Maryland), anesthesiologist Grade B
- Dan Benishek (R, Michigan), general surgeon Grade B
- Nan Hayworth (R, New York), ophthalmologist Grade B
- Scott DesJaris (R, Tennessee), family physician Grade D
- Joe Heck (R., Nevada). emergency room physician Grade B Source: http://thehealthcareblog.com/blog/2011/01/13/doctors-in-congress/
Note that motorists in the worst State, WY, have more than a 5 times higher crash fatality rate than MA, the State with the lowest crash fatality rate. And WY (Grade F) has Republican Senator Barrasso, a surgeon, that is up for re-election next week. MS (Grade F) has Republican Senator Wicker up for re-election. Both of these States are projected by 538 blog to re-elect these Republican Senators.
Montana (Grade D) has Democrat Senator Tester who recently was projected to have a 64% probability of being defeated next week.
Clarification: This is a factual report of what I found on the 2010 crash fatality rate in Montana and what the NY Times 538 Blog projected when I accessed it on Oct. 31, 2012. No criticism of Sen. Tester was intended. I am told that Sen. Tester has been a supporter of auto safety and voted for the legislation enacted in 2012. Sorry for any misunderstanding my original wording may have caused.
Noteworthy is one Senator who is a medical doctor, but not up for re-election this year. Republican Sen. Tom Coburn “represents” the people of OK — and the nation. OK was the State with the 6th highest crash fatality rate in 2010. The year Dr. Coburn was last elected to the Senate was 2010. In December 2010, with 99 Senators agreeing to unanimous consent to pass auto safety legislation, Sen. Coburn single handedly stopped passage of the Auto Safety Act. It took another 2 years — and tens of thousands more crash deaths — to enact a weaker Auto Safety law.
So as Americans go to the polls this year, will enough of them consider whether they want their Nation and their State to suffer crash fatality rates as good as Grade A Massachusetts and Grade B Blue States? Or do voters want to continue dying in States as bad as Grade F States of Wyoming and Mississippi and Grade D States such as Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Montana, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee (Sen. Corker), and West Va.?
For the most recent projections in each of these Red States for Senate races see: http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com
From candidate Romney we hear lots of rhetoric that he and his party are against more police and firefighters. Yet these jobs are critical to saving crash victims. These jobs are needed to rescue people in serious crashes — especially in rural areas in both Red and Blue States. Red States typically vote Republican. Rescue too often depends on “volunteer” fire fighters 24 hours each day and 7 days each week. Time and rescue teams are a matter of life or death. How can a Presidential candidate, or any responsible person, deny the need for police and firefighters?
So in this election, the American people have a chance to do better at saving lives and livelihoods from crash injuries.
Hopefully, this information will help more people vote for a safer future by better protecting American motorists currently dying from crash injuries at the rate of nearly 100 every day. We can do better than to live and die at the rates of Grade D States — if we get political
Let us help Republican and Democrat and Independent representatives know that there is benefit from auto safety government policies aimed at saving lives in all States.