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Poll: Large majority rates gun violence top health concern in St. Louis

In the latest iHeard survey, we asked St. Louis adults what they considered the biggest and second biggest health problem facing St. Louis. By a landslide margin, most people named gun violence the area’s biggest health problem. 

  • Over 70% of respondents said gun violence was the biggest (55%) or second biggest (15%) problem.
  • A distant second was mental health (27%), followed by healthcare access and cost (24%) and drug abuse (21%), which included opioid and fentanyl overdose.
  • Although chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes remain the leading causes of death in Missouri (CDC), all were sparsely selected. All three combined were selected the same number of times as traffic safety.
  • Notably, only 3% selected COVID-19 and Long COVID as the biggest or next biggest problems.
  • Similarly, our findings align closely with a national poll released by Pew Research on June 28, where 83% of Americans said gun violence is a “very big” or “moderately big” problem in the country.

The order of health problems in our survey was randomized for each respondent. This week’s report is based on 162 responses from a panel of adult residents of St. Louis City and County surveyed from Saturday, June 24, to Monday, June 26, 2023. Explore these data and more at iHeardSTL.

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