Vermont ranks as the healthiest state based on 20 measures of wellness, according to a report released on Monday by the United Health Foundation as reported on KaiserNetwork.org. For the report, UHF and the American Public Health Association and Partnership for Prevention rated each state on measures of wellness, such as rates of obesity, infant mortality, cancer deaths and high school graduation. The report used data from CDC, the National Center for Health Statistics, the American Medical Association, the Census Bureau and other sources.
According to the report, Vermont has low rates of obesity, preventable hospitalizations and children who live in poverty. Mississippi ranks as the unhealthiest state, with high rates of obesity and children who live in poverty, despite a high level of health care spending per capita, the report found. Vermont surpassed Minnesota as the healthiest state in 2007, while Hawaii, New Hampshire and Connecticut rounded out the rest of the top five highest-ranked states. The lowest-ranking, or least healthy states, were Mississippi (50), Louisiana (49), Arkansas (48), Oklahoma (47) and Tennessee (46).
As reported in Modern Healthcare, the study said there has been an 18.4% improvement in the nation’s overall health since the first report in 1990, but that the country’s health has remained stagnant over the past six years
The report is available online.