How Healthy is Your State?

To live healthier and longer in the United States, it helps to have money and education — and if you live in Hawaii or California, your odds are even better, according to a new government report. Life expectancy varies dramatically from state to state, health officials say, because of factors like chronic disease and drug overdoses; rates of obesity, smoking and health insurance, and access to medical care.

“Some states do better than other states. The states that do better tend to be in the Northeast and on the West Coast, and the states that do poorly tend to be in the South and Southeast,” said lead researcher Elizabeth Arias, of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

Arias and her colleagues collected data on life expectancy across the United States in 2019. Their study found that Hawaii had the highest life expectancy, 81 years, and Mississippi the lowest, 74 years. At age 65, life expectancy ranged from 17.5 years in Mississippi to 21 years in Hawaii. In all states, life expectancy was higher for women than men, with the gender gap ranging from 3.5 years in Utah to more than six in Mississippi, the researchers found.

Excerpted from U.S. News

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