Vermont Is The Healthiest State In The US, Once Again

Vermont takes the healthy slice of cake this year, winning #1 healthiest state in the union for the sixth year running.

The rankings come from the United Health Foundation‘s newest edition of the American’s Health Rankings. The list is complied from multiple sources including CDC data and phone interviews.They analyse the data in 24 categories, including how many adults smoke or drink, for example. These numbers are then compared to the US average and ranked based on how they compare.

Vermont’s strengths include its number one position for all health determinants combined, which includes ranking in the top 10 states for a high rate of high school graduation, a low violent crime rate, a low incidence of infectious disease, a low prevalence of low birth weight infants, high per capita public health funding, a low rate of uninsured population, and ready availability of primary care physicians.

As Vermont implements the first Single-Payer healthcare system in the nation, their health ranking could raise even higher over the next decade.

Vermont obesity over timeVermont’s obesity levels from 1990 to 2012

Photo: American Health Rankings

There are still things to improve, even in this number one state. Many adults (18.5 per cent) in the state still binge drink, and cancer and work-related deaths are still relatively common. Their youth are also less healthy than those in most other states — Vermont ranks 42 in Youth Obesity and 38 in Youth Smoking.You can see that even with a low obesity rate, Vermont’s obesity rates are still increasing along with the rest of the country’s. They are number 13 out of the states, one of their worst rankings. 

vermont healthiest state 2012 america's health rankings

Photo: United Health Foundation’s America’s Health Rankings

And from the report, here are Vermont’s stats:

  • 11.8 per cent of adults smoke 
  • 10 per cent of adults binge drink
  • 20.7 per cent of adults are obese
  • 16.5 per cent of adults live a sedentary lifestyle
  • 90.7 of incoming ninth graders will graduate high school
  • 4.5 per cent of the population do not have health insurance
  • 236 dollars is the amount of public health funding per person
  • 94.2 per cent of children 19 to 35 months of age are covered for immunizations
  • 122 violent crime offenses per 100,000 population
  • 194.5 primary care physicians per 100,000 population
  • 2.8 cases of infectious diseases per 100,000 population
  • 5.1 micrograms of fine particles per cubic meter, accounting for air pollution.
  • 5.8 per cent annual unemployment
  • 11.6 per cent annual underemployment
  • $51,862 is the median household income

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