Tuesday, Apr 3 2012 - According to a national study, San Juan County rates best in the state in six broad health categories: mortality, morbidity, health factors, health behaviors and clinical care. The study also ranked San Juan 2nd among the state’s 39 counties in Social and Economic Factors.
The study was performed by the University of Wisconsin’s Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood John Foundation.
Areas where San Juan County ranked below the state average was percentage of children living in poverty (20% vs 18% statewide) , excessive drinking (21% vs 17%), adults without health insurance (19% vs 18%) and people unable to see a doctor due to cost (14% vs 13%).
However, signs of health more than outweighed those factors. The study found that, on average, County residents are 16% less like to die prematurely, 25% less likely to describe themselves as being in poor health; also – less likely to smoke, contract a sexually transmitted disease or be a victim of violent crime.
San Juan County Health and Community Services Director John Manning views the results with both gratification and a grain of salt. “San Juan County residents as a whole are very health conscious, and have consistently supported effective public health programs from flu clinics to nutrition programs for children and seniors. But we have to acknowledge that the statistics are also affected by the number of people with chronic illnesses who move out of the County to be closer to treatment facilities.”
This is the second consecutive year that the study has ranked San Juan County as healthiest overall in the state. King County, the state’s largest population center, slipped a notch compared with 2011 from 5th to 6th place. The study gave Ferry County the lowest health ratings in the state.
More Detail and full ratings are available at: http://www.countyhealthrankings.org