The country's least-healthy counties share some common characteristics, including lower high school graduation rates, higher rates of unemployment and much fewer grocery stores or farmer's markets, according to data released by a joint project of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Princeton, N.J., and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, Madison.
County health rankings released
The two groups' 2011 County Health Rankings are organized by county and state, allowing people to see how healthy a given county is and what is affecting the health of the residents, according to a news release from the two groups. The rankings look at measures such as the rate of people dying before age 75, high school graduation rates, access to healthier foods, air pollution levels, income and rates of smoking, obesity and teen births, and allows comparisons based on selected data.
The data can be found at CountyHealthRankings.org. The effort this time around was unable to rank 124 counties or county equivalents because of insufficient data, according to the website.
Along with the data release, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation said it was launching a grant-making program to help counties improve community health, called Mobilizing Action toward Community Health. The foundation will award up to $200,000 to up to 14 communities applying for projects that last up to 24 months.
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