North Carolina improved its overall public health ranking more than any other state in this year’s report released by the United Health Foundation. North Carolina moved up six places from last year, and ranks second highest state in the country for child immunizations. This year’s report marked North Carolina’s highest ranking since the report’s first publication in 1990.
“The health of our citizens is the foundation of our quality of life,” said Governor Pat McCrory. “As this report indicates, we’ve made great strides and will continue to work toward making North Carolina one of the healthiest states in the nation.”
Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Rick Brajer noted that many partners contributed to North Carolina’s success.
“We greatly appreciate the United Health Foundation highlighting North Carolina’s improvement in rank as the greatest among all 50 states in its annual analysis of factors affecting the health of individuals and communities,” said Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Rick Brajer. “The endless pursuit by DHHS and its many partners to improve the quality of lives for all North Carolinians is something we can all take pride in.”
Two highlights of the report focus on North Carolina’s success in child immunization rates and physical activity among adults. More than 80 percent of children ages 19 to 35 months are vaccinated and physical inactivity among adults decreased by 13 percent. Additionally, one of the state’s strengths is the low prevalence of excessive drinking.
“These rankings are a testament to the efforts of Division of Public Health staff, statewide partners and our citizens, and are the foundation for further progress,” said Deputy Secretary for Health Services Dr. Randall Williams. “Taking preventive measures, whether getting vaccinated or exercising, shows North Carolinians are committed to improving their health outcomes. Our commitment as a state is to face our remaining challenges head-on and work toward decreasing infant mortality and improving the health of all North Carolinians as we move forward in 2016.”