County health rankings out: How does your county stack up?

Annual health rankings report places Petersburg last in state

A new report gives a breakdown of health statistics of almost every county in the United States.

Where you live can make a big difference on how well and how long you live.

Though it has made some strides in improving outcomes, Petersburg sank to the bottom of an annual list of the healthiest localities in the state. "You know, we certainly recognize that there are a lot of factors that weigh in on the health of the population", said Geisinger Physician Richard Martin. It measures length and quality of life.

The study looks at both health outcomes and health factors in 242 Texas counties to shed a light on health disparities in the state.

The program compares the health of counties within each state and supports initiatives that address economic and environmental factors that impact health.

Johns County once again took the No. 1 spot which it has held since 2014.

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Of Pennsylvania's 67 counties, Centre County placed 2nd while Pike and Northampton Counties ranked 12th and 13th respectively. The rankings are based on myriad health data, including lifespan, obesity, access to quality care, insured rates, physical inactivity, pollution and more. Beaufort County's rate is 19 percent.

Each county's ranking can be viewed at https://tinyurl.com/ya57cn9l.

Rivas said the intentions of the rankings are to show what specific areas people can target to improve health at a local level. "I'm proud that we're the first city in Texas to pass Tobacco 21", said Junda Woo, medical director of Metro Health Medical.

"In addressing this we need to go beyond just making sure people can see a doctor. They confirm overall health is driven by various social and economic factors that can not be ignored any longer", Ordinans added. "Quick solutions to the complexities of public health don't always fit desired solutions", he said. This year's report shows Blacks in more segregated counties fare worse in rates of child poverty, infant mortality, and high school graduation than those in less segregated counties.

The Charlotte area is home to two of the five healthiest counties in North Carolina, according to a recent study.

Sevcik said the group has worked with community partners to promote bike and walk viability in the region.

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