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Special to the Daily Press

Southeastern New Mexico has been found to have the poorest health status in the state.

The disheartening report comes from a study performed by the Department of Health, which found the region to have “lower income levels and educational achievements, a higher adult smoking rate and higher rates of chronic disease and chronic deaths.”

Southeastern New Mexico was also found to have higher death rates than the rest of the state. According to a press release from the DOH, in 2009, the area was found to have 977.3 deaths per 100,000 people, compared with the lowest regional death rate of 839.9 deaths per 100,000 people in Bernalillo County. … For the rest of the story, subscribe in print and on the web.