(Wampsville, NY – March 2013) In the fourth year of the County Health Rankings released by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Madison County continued to see improvement over previous years.

Madison County ranked 10 out of 62 on health outcomes and 15 out of 62 in health factors.

The Rankings, available at countyhealthrankings.org, assesses counties’ health based on two sets of measures: health outcomes (length and quality of life) and health factors (health behaviors, access to and quality of clinical case, social and economic factors and the physical environment).

An easy-to-use snapshot, the Rankings look at the overall health of nearly every county in all states. It allows each state to see how its counties compare on a range of factors that influence health, including high school graduation rates, obesity, smoking and family and social support.

The County Health Rankings continue to show that where we live matters to our health. They help us see where we live, learn, work and play influences how healthy we are and how long we live. The Rankings show us what may be keeping people from being healthy and living their best life and doing things they enjoy, like spending time with family and friends.

We all want to live a healthy life. The Rankings show that things like having a job, a good education, access to healthy foods and a safe place to live affect how healthy we are.

What we learn from the Rankings is that it’s not one single thing that makes us healthy or unhealthy – it’s a variety of factors such as tobacco use, physical inactivity and community safety. The Rankings help communities sharpen their focus on areas related to health that need improvement.

“Madison County’s high ranking reflects the priority the community as a whole has placed on influencing factors that affect the health,” said Madison County Public Health Director Eric Faisst. “It also shows how important it is to sustain efforts over time to maintain and build upon the progress and successes.

“While we ranked in the top quarter overall, this report helps us identify areas where we as a community have more work to do. It takes a community to ensure the conditions for families to be healthy, not just the work of a few agencies. This statement speaks to the need for continual collaborative efforts of the many organizations, agencies, and healthcare entities that serve our residents in Madison County.

“With our partners we are focusing health improvement for our community in the priority areas of promotion of healthy environments, healthy behaviors and health care. As a community, we will need to continue our efforts together, in order to sustain and improve the health of our families.”

For more information, visit www.healthymadisoncounty.org.

By martha

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