Milwaukee County health outcomes among worst in the state

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Buncombe County is on track to become the third healthiest community in North Carolina, according to national County Health Rankings (CHR) released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute earlier this month.

Areas where Beaufort County came in worse than the state's average include the percentage of adults reporting binge or heavy drinking (21 percent, compared to the state's 18 percent) and the percentage of population under age 65 without health insurance (16 percent compared to the state's 13 percent).

Douglas County continues to be the healthiest county in Colorado, according to an annual ranking of the state's political subsidiaries released Tuesday.

For example, in quality of life, the county's rank improved from 22nd to 20th, but the data supporting it was the same. For more information on the Community Health Assessment, please visit www.livingstoncounty.us/doh.htm.

Rockland ranked sixth for health factors, the same as a year ago.

In Leon County, the Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) is created to address specific opportunities for improved health that have been identified by the community.

The research also shows that eight percent of the county's residents are uninsured, 25% of children are living in poverty, and 15% of the county's residents have severe housing problems.

Rock County saw a number of changes in health behaviors, most notably a 3 percent decrease in obesity from 37 to 34 percent. The teen birth rate for whites is 23.

The health factors rankings are similar.

Other counties could have simply done better. "In the first years, we have brought the rate to even with the state level, with the program participants being recruited from patients flagged as having risk factors in their health records for preterm delivery". Access to good doctors isn't the only important health indicator.

19 percent of adults in Branch County smoke, 20 percent are excessive drinkers while 32 percent are obese.

These rankings are a snapshot of the health of counties across the country and they emphasize that health is not a singular effort but a combined work in progress across all community partners.

"That is significant and an area of concern because we know that is a forecast of those children's future if they're growing up in poverty", Jerome said.

The goal of the ranking project is to give communities a look into their own health, which could provide opportunities for improvement. Black respondents, however, indicated answers most similar to those living in the least healthy quartile of counties.

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