Hawaii Ranks Second Healthiest State
Hawai‘i received one of the highest rankings in the national report, America’s Health Rankings 2008 released today by the United Health Foundation. The report showed Hawai‘i as second in the nation this year up from its ranking of third in 2007. The rankings are based on a variety of 22 health outcomes and measures that compare all 50 states annually. Vermont was the only state that ranked above Hawai‘i.
“It is an honor to have moved up in the rankings from 8th in 2003 to 2nd in 2008. While we recognize we have a number of public health issues to address as a state, including our prevalence of obesity, we will continue to diligently work with the community to get the people of Hawai‘i eating better and reversing the disturbing trends of obesity and chronic diseases like diabetes affecting the lives of our children and adults,” said Health Director Chiyome Fukino, M.D.
The report listed Hawai‘i’s strengths as: low rate of uninsured population (8.2%); low rate of preventable hospitalizations; low levels of air pollution; strong per capita public health funding; and low rates of cancer deaths and cardiovascular death. The report also cited significant decreases in the prevalence of smoking (as much as 38 percent since 1990) and the incidence of infectious disease (decreased by 27 percent).
Immunization coverage also increased by about 10 percent over last year according to the report.