MINNEAPOLIS – Louisiana has reclaimed its status as the least healthiest state in the country, according to the 2008 America’s Health Rankings released today by United Health Foundation.
Last year, Louisiana ranked 49th.
This year, Vermont ranks as the healthiest state, followed by Hawaii and New Hampshire.
Since 1990, Louisiana has ranked 50th every year except in 2003, 2005 and 2007.
Mississippi swapped with Louisiana, rising to 49, Texas was ranked 46th; Florida, 45th; Arkansas, 43rd; Georgia, 41st; and Alabama 40th.
For Louisiana, the report cited a high prevalence of obesity, a high percentage of children in poverty and a high rate of uninsured residents.
Louisiana did make improvements from 2007, including a public health funding increase from $69 to $95 per person, an increase in access to primary care physicians per 100,000 people — 113.5 to 119.4 — but the prevalence of obesity has increase from 12.3 percent to 30.7 percent since 1990.•