Health Rankings: Lake County Residents Among Illinois' Healthiest

Lake County ranked ninth out of the 102 counties in Illinois.

A recent report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ranks Lake County among the top 10 healthiest counties in Illinois.

According to a press release from the Lake County Health Department, Lake County ranks ninth out of Illinois' 102 counties. The following factors were used to measure counties' healthiness: length of life, quality of life, clinical care, health behaviors, socioeconomic factors and physical environment.

The report, which was completed with the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, ranked neighboring McHenry County at fifth in Illinois.

"Overall, we are pleased with the ranking, which for the third consecutive year puts Lake County among the top 10 healthiest counties in Illinois," Irene Pierce, executive director of the Lake County Health Department/Community Health Center, said in the press release. "The report also identifies health issues in need of improvement. We found that the report's assessment was very much in line with a local community-led strategic planning progress taking place in Lake County."

Lake County Health Statistics

The report offers a variety of statistics for Lake County. For example, the report states that 25 percent of Lake County adults are obese, and 19 percent lack physical activity. Additionally, 15 percent of Lake County adults smoke. The report noted that the excessive drinking rate is 16 percent.

"Lake County is overall a healthy county, but work still needs to be done," said Pierce. "The county rankings report and our local assessment have helped identify areas in need of attention. The local community and the health department will be working to improve these areas and to make Lake County a healthier county in which to live and work."

The report also revealed that 12 percent of Lake County residents are uninsured and 12 percent of children live in poverty. The county's unemployment rate is 10.5 percent, compared to 10.3 percent nationally.

The Lake County Health Department noted that "calculations in the report show 54 percent of the restaurants in Lake County are fast food, in contrast to a 25 percent national benchmark. Fast food numbers are similar in the other collar counties."
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Chart: County Health Rankings

While several collar counties of Chicago ranked among the top 10 healthiest counties in the state, obesity and physical inactivity rates hovered around 25 percent for residents in many of those counties. 

Ranked the unhealthiest in the state, 31 percent of children in Hardin County — a small county in southern Illinois — are in poverty, 42 percent live in single-parent households and the obesity rate is at 30 percent. 

Health Rankings McHenry County Kendall County DuPage County Kane County Lake County National rate Hardin County Overall ranking 5 1 3 8 9
102 Mortality ranking 4 2 1 5 3
102 Adult obesity 24% 26% 25% 28% 25% 25% 30% Adult smoking 22% 19% 15% 16% 15% 14%
Physical inactivity 24% 24% 19% 23% 19% 21% 28% Uninsured 11% 10% 10% 15% 12% 15% 15% Children in poverty 10% 6% 9% 16% 12% 19% 31% Mammography screening 67% 70% 69% 68% 68% 66% 53% Excessive drinking 21% 23% 19% 21% 16% 8%
Unemployment rate 9.6% 9.8% 10% 10.3% 10.5% 10.3% 11.6% Single-parent households 18% 18% 18% 24% 21% 31% 42%

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