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

“As the state team lead agency analyzing the Rankings for Pennsylvania, we find that the information is an important way to understand the relationship between where we live and our health,” said Francine Axler, Executive Director of Public Health Management Corporation’s Community Health Data Base. “It’s helpful to see where certain counties need improvement so public health organizations like PHMC can target and address specific health issues.”

PHMC is highlighting three key metrics that further represent major health problems identified through the CHDB Community Heath Needs Assessment (CHNA) for Philadelphia. The CHDB (Community Health Data Base) data closely examines health status of communities at a local zip code level.

  1. Mental Health Conditions – An increase in serious, chronic mental health problems and a lack of affordable treatment for these conditions is a growing concern in Philadelphia. The CHDB data show that within Philadelphia, 21 percent of adults have a serious mental health issue, such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia. The County Health Rankings data shows that Philadelphia residents have 4.8 poor mental health days compared to the state average of 3.9 days and the top counties in the U.S. at 2.8 days.
  2. Obesity and Overweight – This national epidemic continues to be a serious problem among adults and children in the city. According to CHDB, more than one-third of adults (34 percent) are obese and an additional 33 percent are overweight. The County Health Rankings shows that adult obesity in Philadelphia is 29 percent, equal to the state average, but four percent higher than the top counties in the U.S. (25 percent). Physical inactivity in Philadelphia is 26 percent, compared to 24 percent across Pennsylvania and six percent higher than the top counties in the US (20 percent).
  3. Lack of Access to Dental Care – A lack of access to dental care is a serious concern because it leads to poor nutrition, poor self-esteem, problems with employment, and is a causative factor in more serious illnesses, such as heart disease. In Philadelphia, 41 percent of adults and 20 percent of children did not have a dental visit in the past year. The County Health Rankings shows that Philadelphia’s ratio of population to dentist (1,470:1) is better than Pennsylvania  (1,550:1), there still is a lot of work that needs to be done to come close to the top counties in the U.S. (1,340:1)

For more information on Community Health Data Base and local insights, contact Francine Axler, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 215-985-2521.