Did you know if you live an hour and a half out of Metro Vancouver, in Hope, the life expectancy rate drops by almost 8 years?
The rate is 76.5 years compared to 84 years in Burnaby, the highest in the health region.
It’s enough of a problem that the Fraser Health Authority is giving organizations in the community half a million dollars to try to help people live longer.
Fraser Health spokesperson Petra Pardy says chronic disease, and double the number of smokers are part of the problem.
“There is a growing senior population that lives in Hope and it’s about to increase from 25-32% over the next 10 years. With aging communities comes chronic conditions,” she says.
But Pardy says the community also faces several other challenges.
“Food security, education, income as well as aging population is one other factor that contributes to lower life expectancy,” she says.
The money will go to a variety of programs including early intervention for mental health, seniors programs, and youth health and wellness, along with funding for regional transit connecting Hope to Chilliwack.