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Supervisor wants to know why blacks die sooner in Antelope Valley

James Gocke, a family nurse practitioner, takes notes during Regina Tate's examination at the Antelope Valley Community Clinic in Lancaster.

Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich on Tuesday called for a study of why people who live in the Antelope Valley, particularly African Americans, die sooner than other county residents.

Antonovich's motion follows a Times story detailing black mortality rates in the High Desert, where the average black resident is expected to live until 70, according to county statistics. In the rest of the county, African Americans live to age 74, while the average county resident's life expectancy is 81.

County officials said in the story that they had not investigated the possible causes, although some experts said limited healthcare access may play a role.

Antonovich asked the county's health agencies to assess the morality rates in the High Desert and report on actions in 30 days that could be taken to address the healthcare needs of the region.

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-- Jason Song at the County Hall of Administration

Photo: James Gocke, a family nurse practitioner, takes notes during Regina Tate's examination at the Antelope Valley Community Clinic in Lancaster. Credit: Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times

 
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