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Poll: How Healthy Is This Region?

A new report ranks all New England states among the top-10 healthiest states in America.

For the second year in a row, Rhode Island and Massachusetts rank as two of the top 10 healthiest states in America. In the 2011 America’s Health Rankings, released this week by United Health Foundation in collaboration with the American Public Health Association and Partnership for Prevention, Massachusetts is #5 on the list of healthy states, with Rhode Island at #10 for the second straight year.

The report analyzes such things as obesity rates, diabetes among children and children living in poverty, as well smoking cessation, premature deaths, preventable hospitalizations, cardiovascular deaths and more.

According to the report, Rhode Island’s strengths include:

  • High immunization coverage – 94.4% of children ages 19 to 35 months;
  • Low rate of uninsured population – 11 percent of the state does not have health insurance;
  • Ready availability of primary-care physicians.

Rhode Island’s challenges include:

  • High prevalence of binge drinking;
  • High percentage of children in poverty – 20.4% of those under age 18;
  • High rate of preventable hospitalizations.

Massachusetts' strengths include:

  • Low rate of uninsured population;
  • Low prevalence of smoking;
  • Lower prevalence of obesity than most other states;
  • Ready availability of primary-care physicians.

Massachusetts' challenges include:

  • High prevalence of binge drinking;
  • High rate of preventable hospitalizations.

Overall, New England is the healthiest area of the country, with the top three rankings going to Vermont (#1), New Hampshire (#2) and Connecticut (#3).

What are your reactions to this report? Do you feel we live in one of the healthiest areas of the country?

deb of see-attleboro December 09, 2011 at 04:48 PM
Here is my conclusion. All six New England states rate in the top 10 and all six New England states have issues with binge drinking. The bottom 6 states are SC, AL, AR, OK, LA, and MS. 5 out of these six states rank low in binge drinking. So I think these slacker states need federal aid so they can have greater accessibility to booze;) Allegedly, Lousiana has no issues with binge drinking. At least it is not mentioned in the report. To that I have two words: Mardi Gras!
mark December 09, 2011 at 06:22 PM
Out over the cape, on hot summer days, you can sometimes see a yellow haze. Thought it might have been local smog. Saw a program on one of the scientific channels on TV - it explained it as smog from the rest of the -country- that gets pushed along by the jet stream. That bummed me out.
Gretchen Robinson December 09, 2011 at 07:54 PM
when I wake up at 5 am with my bedroom full of smoke from the neighbor upwind of me starting her woodstove, when I see clouds of diesel fumes from trucks on Route 152 nearby, when I read about the dangers of particulate matter (bits of tire, smog, diesel fumes, dust, road grime in the air), I wonder just how healthy this area is. Down the street in the vernal pond, someone dumped a metal container with "ARSENIC" on it in the flood plane. The new CVS on North Main in Attleboro is build above a toxic waste site, with a huge concrete cap on it. This is not a safe area.
deb of see-attleboro December 09, 2011 at 07:56 PM
Well! These are sobering thoughts! Anyone know what time happy hour begins? It must be 5 o'clock somewhere:)
Gretchen Robinson December 09, 2011 at 07:58 PM
I get disgusted with the false science behind some of these 'feel good' surveys. We have excellent healthcare in this area, or should I say access to good healthcare....if one can afford healthcare. Sorry if this sends you to a bar for a happy hour. Have a good time.

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