How does your county fare in terms of health?

Eric Strauss//March 16, 2016

How does your county fare in terms of health?

Eric Strauss//March 16, 2016

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has released its annual County Health Rankings for 2016, in collaboration with the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, rating counties across the nation for their health outcomes and health factors.The foundation said in a news release Wednesday that its report found that, overall, rural counties struggled to achieve good health, while urban counties had stronger health factors such as fewer injury deaths and higher levels of education.

Among the Garden State’s 21 counties, however, the ratings seemed to shake off the national standard.

More rural, northwestern counties such as Hunterdon and Sussex were among the highly ranked, while urban counties such as Essex or Camden finished toward the back of the pack.

 “The County Health Rankings show how important it is to examine all the conditions that impact well-being and can help families thrive,” Dr. Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, CEO and president of the RWJ Foundation, said in a prepared statement.

The study looked at more than 30 factors affecting health, including societal ones such as housing and commuting time.

“The Rankings data are only as valuable as the action it inspires and the lives it improves,” Bridget Catlin, co-director of the rankings, said in a statement. “Whether it’s addressing health gaps between counties or the concentration of poverty in rural and residentially segregated communities of color — targeting resources to the people and places in greatest need is essentially to building a ‘Culture of Health.’”

For overall health outcomes, New Jersey’s 21 counties ranked as follows:

  1. Hunterdon
  2. Morris
  3. Somerset
  4. Bergen
  5. Sussex
  6. Middlesex
  7. Monmouth
  8. Union
  9. Burlington
  10. Warren
  11. Ocean
  12. Hudson
  13. Mercer
  14. Passaic
  15. Cape May
  16. Gloucester
  17. Salem
  18. Atlantic
  19. Camden
  20. Essex
  21. Cumberland

For overall health factors, the rankings were slightly different:

  1. Hunterdon
  2. Somerset
  3. Morris
  4. Bergen
  5. Monmouth
  6. Middlesex
  7. Burlington
  8. Sussex
  9. Warren
  10. Mercer
  11. Union
  12. Ocean
  13. Gloucester
  14. Cape May
  15. Camden
  16. Hudson
  17. Essex
  18. Passaic
  19. Atlantic
  20. Salem
  21. Cumberland

For more on the rankings, click here.