FLOWOOD, Miss. (WJTV) – Mississippi’s State Health Officer said the state ranks last when it comes to receiving adequate health care. However, medical professionals are doing what they can to change that statistic.

The professionals attended the 10th annual Empowering Communities for Healthy Mississippi Conference. They shared and coordinated resources in order to improve health services offered in the state.

Experts said creating a healthier Mississippi starts in the home and goes all the way to the state level.

“We have to improve education regarding health and behaviors that needs to happen far upstream as we can,” said Dr. Dan Edney, Mississippi’s State Health Officer.

Mississippi ranks 50th in maternal mortality and 47th in infant mortality. Health care professionals said in addition to routine doctor visits, leaning into community resources could make a difference in prenatal care and postnatal care.

The health care system continues to face new challenges. The latest is a shortage of 200 major medications used to treat STDs, cancer, diabetes and other health issues.