Boone County was recognized in the 2019 national County Health Rankings as ninth out of 115 counties in Missouri for health outcomes and fourth in Missouri for health factors. Health outcomes measure the current health of the county. Health factors measure how healthy a county might be in the future based on factors that influence health, such as health behaviors, clinical care, social and economic factors and physical environment.
"These numbers highlight the work of our many partners, who make up the local public health system, to improve the health and well-being for all who live in the county," Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services Department Director Stephanie Browning said. "The County Health Rankings show us that where we live matters to our health. The health of a community depends on many different factors - ranging from individual health behaviors, education and jobs, to quality of healthcare and the environment."
The annual County Health Rankings provide an in-depth assessment of how health is influenced by where we live, learn, work and play. They provide a starting point for change in communities by exploring the nature and size of health differences in income, employment, education, access to care, quality of care, diet and exercise, housing and transit, tobacco use and sexual activity to provide a deeper understanding of community health.
Boone County residents have access to individualized care to meet their needs. The 2019 rankings show Boone County ranks first in Missouri in terms of life expectancy and preventable hospital stays. Boone County also has the lowest percentage of uninsured residents in Missouri, while ranking among top U.S. performers in the ratio of population to primary care physician, as well as the ratio of population to a mental health provider.
According to Browning, Boone County's health care providers, such as primary care physicians, mental health providers, dentists, hospitals and urgent care centers, are all valuable contributors to Boone County's number one clinical care ranking among all Missouri counties.
"Even though we have high rankings, we can always make forward progress by partnering with communities to improve the social and economic landscape and removing barriers that make it difficult for all people to be healthy," Browning said.
Since 2010, the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps, a collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, compares counties within each state in the United States on more than 30 health-influencing factors. The County Health Rankings are available at www.countyhealthrankings.org.