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Newport Independent - Newport, AR
  • County’s health rankings improve over past year

  • The health of Arkansas County residents has increased over the past year, according to the annual County Health Rankings and Roadmaps. Arkansas County ranks 55th out of 75 counties in Arkansas, an increase from 66th in 2011 and 67th in 2010. In health factors, the county ranks slightly lower at 60th out of 75. It was ranked 62nd in 2011 and 61st in 2010. These rankings came about through the following factors:
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  • The health of Arkansas County residents has increased over the past year, according to the annual County Health Rankings and Roadmaps. Arkansas County ranks 55th out of 75 counties in Arkansas, an increase from 66th in 2011 and 67th in 2010. In health factors, the county ranks slightly lower at 60th out of 75. It was ranked 62nd in 2011 and 61st in 2010. These rankings came about through the following factors:

    1 Mortality
    The county’s mortality, or premature death, ranks 42nd in the state. According to the report, there are 10,221 premature deaths in Arkansas County with an error margin of 8,726 to 11,717. The state has 9,580 while the national benchmark is 5,466. The county ranked 66th in mortality in both 2010 and 2011.
    2 Morbidity
    Morbidity, the rate of incidence of disease, has the county ranked 66th, after being 62nd in 2011 and 61st in 2010. Thirty percent of Arkansas County residents are in poor or fair health with 4.6 poor physical health days and 4.1 poor mental health days. There is an 11.2 percent low birthrate, which is 9 percent for the state and six percent for the nation.
    3 Health Behaviors
    Twenty-three percent of the county’s adults smoke, which is the same as the state’s percentage. The county ranks 49th out of 75 in health behaviors, down from 57th in 2011 and 62nd in 2010. The county’s residents include 36 percent in adult obesity; 37 percent in physical inactivity; and 10 percent in excessive drinking. The motor vehicle crash death rate is 28 while there were 671 sexually transmitted infections. In the state the death rate is 28 while there were 503 sexually transmitted infections. The teen birth rate is 58, slightly lower than the state’s 61.
    4 Clinical Care
    Nineteen percent of the county’s residents are uninsured, which is similar to the state’s 20 percent. The national average is 11 percent. The state ranks 22nd in clinical care, close to the 23rd it ranked in 2011 and 22nd in 2010. The ratio of primary care physicians is 832 to 1 while there are 91 preventable hospital stays. Eighty percent get diabetic screenings while 52 percent get mammography screenings.
    5 Social and Economic Factors
    The county ranks 63rd in social and economic factors. It ranked 62nd in 2010 and 65th in 2011. Seventy-two percent of the county’s residents graduated high school while only 48 percent have some college experience. Unemployment is 16.6 percent with 28 percent of children in poverty and 25 percent in inadequate social support. Children in single-parent households equal 39 percent while the violent crime rate is 383, which is less than the state’s 523 and the national benchmark of 73.
    6 Physical environment
    The county’s rank rose to 40th out of 75 counties for physical environment, which includes air pollution-particulate matter days, air pollution-ozone days, access to recreational facilities, limited access to healthy foods and fast food restaurants. The county ranked 53rd in 2010 and 57th in 2011.
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