County Health Rankings & Roadmaps, A Healthier Nation, County by County

The County Health Rankings models and measures

Our Approach

The County Health Rankings model of population health

What can I do?

Action Center

Explore guides and tools for improving health

What can I learn from others?

Reports

Key findings from the last three years of County Health Rankings and other national reports.

County-by-County Blog

Project updates, commentaries, events and news about health across the nation from the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps team.

Exploring the Data

We provide a variety of ways of exploring, comparing, and visualizing the Rankings and all of the underlying data. Enter the name of a county into the Search box to go directly to a county snapshot. In each county snapshot, you can see the county’s ranks for Health Outcomes and Health Factors. And, for each measure, you can see the county’s value, its error margins (if applicable), the state average, and the Top U.S. Performers.

County Snapshot

  • County value We report values for the 35 measures we use to calculate ranks. For some measures in certain counties, data are suppressed to protect privacy when the sample size or number of events is too small.
  • Trends We include trend graphs for 12 measures (click on the graph icon in the Trend column of your county's snapshot). The color of the line in the icon shows the direction of the measures in your county:
    • Red - Your county is getting worse for this measure
    • Yellow - Your county is staying the same for this measure
    • Green - Your county is getting better for this measure
    You can find a lot more information on interpreting and using your trend graphs in our section, Measuring Progress.
  • Error margins Where possible, we provide the margins of error (95% confidence intervals) for our measure values.
  • Top U.S. Performers For many Rankings measures, we have displayed the value for which only 10% of counties in the country are doing better, i.e., the 90th percentile or 10th percentile, depending on whether the measure is framed positively (e.g., high school graduation) or negatively (e.g., adult smoking). A list of the Top Performer values is available. (Some measures are not comparable across states--a Top Performer value will not apply in these cases. Information on comparability of measures across states is available.)
  • State value For each measure, the average value for the state the county is located in is listed.
  • Rank For each ranked county, there are eight ranks listed in the snapshot: one each for overall health outcomes and overall health factors, one each for the two types of health outcomes (length of life and quality of life), and one for each of the factors themselves: health behaviors, clinical care, social and economic, and the physical environment.
  • Areas to Explore & Areas of Strength You can click on the Areas to Explore and Areas of Strength buttons at the top of your county snapshot to, respectively, highlight potential challenges your community may want to examine more closely, and factors that are assets in your community already. We use a variety of techniques to identify the health factors for your county that seem to have the greatest potential opportunity for improvement, or assets your community may want to build on while also accounting for the relative influence of each measure on health outcomes. We identify measures where there are meaningful differences between your county’s values and either your state average, the national average, or the state average in the best state. 

Additional Measures

  • From your county snapshot, you can also access Additional Measures that provide context (e.g., county demographics) or other relevant data (e.g., the measures used to construct the Food Environment Index).

Data and Measures

If you click on a measure's name in a County Snapshot, you can see more information about that measure:

  • summary of the measure, the years on which it is based, how the measure is incorporated into the Rankings, and overall statistics
  • a map showing the spectrum of values among counties in a state.  Counties with better values are colored a lighter shade of blue or green, while worse values are colored a darker shade.
  • the data values for all counties in the state allow you to see the actual values for the measure in each county in the state along with Z-scores and error margins (95% confidence intervals). To find the county with the best or worst value for that measure, you click on the arrows in the Z-score column header to sort the counties from best to worst (or worst to best).
  • description of why we include this measure and its strengths and limitations
  • the data source
  • policies and programs that are potential strategies to address the measure or the issue area it represents

Compare Counties

You can compare ranks and measures for multiple counties across the country. Ranked or additional measures can be chosen and will appear side by side for selected counties.

Download (Data Files, State Summary Reports, and Maps)

You can download all of the data used to compute summary scores and ranks, as well as data for unranked counties in several formats, including spreadsheets and SAS files. The national and state files include every measure that we use, composite summary scores, and detailed descriptions of data sources and collection years.

Print

You can print snapshots for a single county, a selection of snapshots from several counties, or snapshots for all counties in your state. Once you have selected snapshots to print, you can use your browser’s printing capabilities to print the snapshot(s). If you have PDF save capabilities, you can also use this feature to create PDFs of your snapshots. 

Share

You can share a County Health Rankings snapshot for your county on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or via email.