So Close, Yet So Far: Chester and Philadelphia Counties Rank Worst and First in Big PA Health Study

Sometimes you’ll come across a ranking so wrong or arbitrary or subjective, it’ll turn you off lists forever. But don’t let ranking fatigue bring you down! The respected Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (Go Jets!) has released a study ranking the relative health of all 67 Pennsylvania counties. The results: #1-Chester; #Last-Philly.

On virtually every metric–car fatalities and excessive drinking excluded–Philly ranks behind Pennsylvania’s statewide averages, and far behind its suburbs. To wit:

  • Poor or fair heath: 20% Philadelphia vs. 9% Chester
  • Obesity: 32% Philadelphia vs. 21% of Chester
  • Physical Inactivity: 30% Philadelphia vs. 19% Chester
  • Low Birthweight: 11.3% Philadelphia vs. 6.8% Chester
  • Uninsured: 17% Philadelphia vs. 10% Chester

Click here for a chart detailing full metrics for Philly and the four suburbs surrounding it.


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