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Published: Wed, December 13, 2017
Medical | By Garry George

How healthy is your state? The disparities are stark

How healthy is your state? The disparities are stark

MA is the healthiest state in the nation, according to a new ranking that considers 35 factors. Among the state's strengths are its low percentage of uninsured people, low prevalence of obesity, and high vaccination rates.

The premature death rate increased for the third year in a row.

The report also highlighted a decrease in smoking over the last five years to 13.6 percent from 18.2 percent of adults, a decrease in cancer deaths by 4 percent over the last ten years, and a decrease in air pollution over the last decade. In the past five years, MA saw a 69 percent increase in drug deaths, or an addition of 8-plus deaths per 100,000 people.

A new report on mental health care in the United States shows that Colorado is worse than most states at treating those who need help, especially kids. "Similarly, Massachusetts and New Jersey have more than 80 dentists per 100,000 population, while Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama and DE have fewer than 45 dentists per 100,000 population".

On the opposite side of the spectrum, MS has been ranked last for the second year in a row, then Louisiana in 49 place, Arkansas in 48, Alabama in 47 and West Virginia in 46. In Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island, the authors noted a large increase in drug-related deaths.

The Bay State is the healthiest in the USA, based on 35 measures based on behavior, environment and clinical care data, according to the annual report.

'This report serves as an important tool for health care professionals, policymakers and communities in their collaborative efforts to address these challenges, and help build healthier communities across the nation, ' said Rhonda Randall, D.O., senior adviser to United Health Foundation, and chief medical officer, UnitedHealthcare Retiree Solutions.

If you live in MA, you may be healthier and have greater access to healthcare providers, according to a new report. Health outcomes are also used to rank states.

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