New Poll Ranks Health in All 50 States
Dec 9, 2010
A new report, known as America’s Health Rankings, shows the health of each of the 50 states.
To nobody’s surprise, the Top 4 healthiest states in order are the New England states of Vermont, Massachussetts,New Hampshire and Connecticut. Rounding out the Bottom 4 is Mississippi (50), followed by Louisiana, Arkansas and Nevada.
The report is a joint effort between the American Public Health Association, Partnership for Prevention and the United Health Foundation — which funded the project. It is based on data compiled from 2009.
The study ranks each state on a series of measures — from the prevalence of smokers, to exercise habits, teen birth rates and reported cases of infectious disease. Each state also receives an overall ranking.
It would seem that education plays a vital role in the health of the public. The government, schools, corporations and others need to do tremendous outreach in order to change eating patterns, reduce smoking, improve fitness and to make people more aware of their personal health.
As we turn to a more publicly-funded healthcare, it would seem that people in the Northeast would not want their taxes going to subsidize the poor health habits of those in the Southeast. If you think the public debate on healthcare over the past 18 months was contentious, wait until healthier states have to subsidize less healthy ones.
It is time for the entire country to go on a wellness program, with a carrot and stick approach. If one neighbor is helping to pay for the healthcare of a more obese, less physically active neighbor, I think the public will demand it.