Death of Adults Due to Pneumonia Dropped Dramatically

Deaths of Americans age 18 and over hospitalized for pneumonia plummeted by 45 percent between 2000 and 2007 regardless of who paid for their care, according to the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

The federal agency found that between 2000 and 2007, the average death rate due to pneumonia fell from 74 to 41 deaths per 1,000 admissions. At 23 deaths per 1,000 admissions, Arizona had the lowest pneumonia-related death rate for hospitalized patients, followed closely by Maryland, with 26 deaths per 1,000 admissions.

AHRQ also found that in 2007, eight states reported 50 or more deaths per 1,000 admissions:

Nebraska -- 57 deaths per 1,000 admissions

Wyoming -- 55 deaths per 1,000 admissions

Hawaii -- 55 deaths per 1,000 admissions

West Virginia -- 54 deaths per 1,000 admissions

Arkansas -- 53 deaths per 1,000 admissions

Oklahoma -- 53 deaths per 1,000 admissions

New York -- 52 deaths per 1,000 admissions

Vermont -- 50 deaths per 1,000 admissions

The 2007 pneumonia-related death rates of the other states ranged from 30 to 49 deaths per 1,000 admissions.

This AHRQ News and Numbers is based on information from the AHRQ State Snapshots (, which provides state-specific health care quality information, including strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for improvement. The goal is to help state officials and their public- and private-sector partners better understand healthcare quality and disparities in their state.