Cobb No. 6 for Georgia Health

The county dropped one spot in the 2012 County Health Rankings.

Cobb County slipped from fifth-healthiest county in Georgia to sixth in the 2012 County Health Rankings compiled by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Those groups have compiled the annual rankings of the nation’s health on a county-by-county basis since 2010. Cobb was No. 4 in Georgia in the first report but has fallen one spot each year since.

According to the 2012 report, released Tuesday, Georgia’s healthiest residents can be found in Fayette County, while Talbot County is the least healthy in the state.

The Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation created an index for determining the overall health of residents that looks at a number of medical, social and economic factors. The factors include a county’s number of adult smokers, number of obese adults, teen birthrate, number of residents without health insurance, number of children living in poverty, level of residents’ education, number of fast-food restaurants and air pollution.

Are Cherokee and Gwinnett really healthier than Cobb? Tell us in the comments below.

Cobb County ranked better than the state average in each category except excessive drinking and air pollution:

  • The rate of excessive drinking in Cobb was 17 percent, while the state average was 14 percent.
  • Compared with the rest of the state, Cobb County experienced more days when particulate matter was unhealthy for sensitive populations as well as more days when ozone levels were high.

Most of the lowest-ranked counties—those from 118 to 156—are in central and south Georgia, while most of those with the highest rankings—1 to 39—are in north-central Georgia. 

County Health, Cobb vs. Cherokee

Georgia  Cherokee  Cobb Health Outcomes, State Rank
4 6

Mortality Rank

6 5 Premature death 7,965 5,465 5,432

Morbidity Rank

7 11 Poor or fair health 16% 11% 11% Poor physical health days 3.6 2.9 3 Poor mental health days 3.4 2.8 2.9 Low birthweight 9.40% 7.30% 8.10%

Health Factors Rank

6 7

Health Behaviors Rank
12 4 Adult smoking 19% 18% 15% Adult obesity 28% 28% 24% Physical inactivity 24% 22% 21% Excessive drinking 14% 17% 17% Motor vehicle crash death rate 17 12 9 Sexually transmitted infections 411 133 288 Teen birth rate 54 33 36

Clinical Care Rank

32 26 Uninsured 21% 17% 20% Primary care physicians 1,024:1 1,946:1 1,148:1 Preventable hospital stays 68 67 63 Diabetic screening 83% 86% 84% Mammography screening 66% 66% 68%

Social, Economic Factors Rank
6 10 High school graduation 81% 82% 87% Some college 58% 69% 72% Unemployment 10.20% 8.90% 9.70% Children in poverty 25% 12% 20% Inadequate social support 21% 14% 17% Children in single-parent households 36% 20% 28% Violent crime rate 470 87 322

Physical Environment Rank
33 144 Air pollution-particulate matter days 2 3 4 Air pollution-ozone days 12 6 26 Access to recreational facilities 8 13 10 Limited access to healthy foods 10% 10% 7% Fast food restaurants 50% 43% 49% Source: County Health Ranking 2012

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