Iowa ranked #2 healthiest state for seniors

By Kendrew Panyanouvong on Monday, June 12, 2017

Iowa ranked #2 overall in the annual report

2017 National Rankings Map 

A new report has ranked Iowa as the number two healthiest state in the nation for seniors.

The report, conducted by MedicareSupplement, releases an annual report to identify the healthiest states in the nation for seniors. Among the top this year were Minnesota at #1, Iowa at #2, North Dakota at #3, followed by Florida, Nebraska and other states.

AARP Iowa congratulates Iowa’s Healthiest State Initiative on its on-going programs to improve the state’s health outcomes," said Kent Sovern, AARP Iowa State Director. "This national recognition is validation of efforts by organizations, businesses and individuals across the state to make healthy lifestyles a high priority at the community level.” 

State rankings are measured by five categories and more than 20 metrics that evaluated quality, affordability, and accessibility of local health care. Other factors considered included air quality, crime, food insecurity, volunteerism, physical activity, community data and more.

Data for Iowa

Breaking it down

For 2017, Iowa placed high in:

Overall Rank: 2

Population Rank: 11

Cost of Living Rank: 8

Healthcare Rank: 13

Community Factors Rank: 5

Environment Rank: 12

Being ranked the top 13 in all five categories, Iowa also ranked:

•3rd among the states with the least amount of hospital deaths for patients 65 and over at just 16%.

•3rd for the percentage of able-bodied seniors, or those age 65 and over with no disability, at 68%.

•7th in hospice care enrollment for those age 65 and over with a diagnosis of a health condition with a high probability of death, at 59%.

•7th among the states with the lowest reported cases of mental health distress among residents 65 and over, at less than 6%.

•8th in food insecurity, with less than 12% of residents 60 and over facing hunger.

Iowa has been consistent in rankings in the annual report. And in addition, the report also featured Des Moines, Waterloo and Cedar Rapids as cities that scored highly in health factors. 

Des Moines was featured due to the cities low air particle emissions and high options for senior community living and home healthcare nursing. Waterloo, because of of the highest Medicare reimbursement rate and prescription drug coverage, and Cedar Rapids, which scored highest in overall hospital patient satisfaction among all cities on our list and had relatively low readmission rates.

For more information about the annual report, facts and more, click here.