Hickman County, Tennessee is in the southwest portion of Middle Tennessee. Its capital is Centerville, and other notable cities are Bon Aqua, Lyles, Shady Grove, and Grinder’s Switch (known for Minnie Pearl). Minnie Pearl (or Sara Cannon) is one of only two Hickman County residents who became famous; the other is Beth Slater Whitson, who wrote the song “Let Me Call You Sweetheart”. The Hickman County School System consists of eight schools, and some private schools are available.
Hickman County residents work in construction, transportation equipment, metal and metal products manufacturing, repair and maintenance, miscellaneous manufacturing, truck transport, and public administration.
Their hospital, Saint Thomas Hickman County, is currently endangered by the lack of Medicaid Expansion. This hospital hosted a Mission at Home Day on April 12, 2014, providing medical services to over 300 residents who could otherwise not afford them. 1,507 of the 24,690 residents (6.10%) are in the Medicaid Gap, and 22.7% are living in poverty. Hickman’s non-institutionalized employment disabled persons between ages 21 and 64 are somewhat fewer than 1,200 men and 900 women.
The main point of this profile is to highlight the county’s health dilemma by using the Years of Potential Life Lost measurement developed recently. To explain this measurement, I will repeat the information given previously.
The average normal age of death used here is 75, and all the recorded deaths in each county during a year are considered. For instance, if a person dies at 25, he/she contributes 50 years to the YPLL rate. The latest YPLL rates are for the years 2008-2010. What we are measuring here is PREMATURE MORTALITY. Accidents and diseases happen to everybody, but, by comparing counties, we can get an idea of the county’s general health. For instance, the wealthiest and healthiest county in Tennessee is Williamson County, and their YPLL as of 2008-2010 was 3,839 Years of Potential Life.
Hickman County’s YPLL rate is 10,127 years of potential life lost. Its Death per Thousand rate is slightly higher than the state average for most years between 1990 and 2006. The Fatal Accident rate was considerably higher than the state average in all years between 1993 and 2009, excepting 1995, 1998, and 2006. Hickman County consists of 613 square miles, all rural, and has only one hospital.
The state senate race is still in progress in Hickman County. After the elections, concerned citizens can look up both email addresses and phone numbers for their new senator at www.capitol.tn.gov.