PHMC is the state lead agency to distribute Pennsylvania’s County Health Rankings results. Chester County ranks healthiest in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia County is the least healthy county in the state, according to the seventh annual County Health Rankings, released today by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute (UWPHI). The Rankings are available at www.countyhealthrankings.org.
“Public Health Management Corporation’s (PHMC) Community Health Database findings combined with County Health Rankings offer insights that can help shape health care policy and improve care at the local level,” said Francine Axler, Executive Director of Public Health Management Corporation’s Community Health Data Base. “The Rankings offer a comprehensive view of how a variety of factors – including housing, education and access to healthy foods – impact health.”
PHMC’s Community Health Data Base has pulled out key metrics of the mental health condition of the Southeastern Pennsylvania region at a local zip code level. Within Philadelphia, more than 17 percent of adults (18 and older) have been diagnosed with a mental health condition, with the highest percentage in Philadelphia County (20.8% diagnosed), followed by Delaware County (14.2% diagnosed); Bucks County (15.7% diagnosed), and Chester County (15.3% diagnosed). Montgomery County has the lowest percentage of adults age 18 and over who have ever been diagnosed with a mental health condition in Southeastern Pennsylvania (14.2% diagnosed). The County Health Rankings report:
- Residents have 4.6 poor mental health days compared to the state average of 3.9 days and the top counties in the U.S. at 3.0 days.
- Although Philadelphia’s ratio of the population to mental health providers is better than the state at 470:1 in Philadelphia, compared to 600:1 in the state, it’s still far behind the in the top counties in the U.S. with a 360:1 ratio.
Additionally, the report reveals that drug overdose deaths are fueling a dramatic increase in premature deaths nationally among 15- to 44- year olds. The drug overdose epidemic is the leading cause of death among 25- to 44-year olds. Drug deaths are also accelerating among 15- to 24- year olds, but nearly three times as many people in this age group die by homicide, suicide or in motor vehicle crashes. This year’s Rankings also introduce a new measure focused on young people, those 16 to 24, who are not in school or working. Rates of youth disconnection are higher in rural counties (21.6 percent), particularly those in the South and West, than in urban ones (13.7 percent).