It turns out that the healthiest place to grow old is in Minnesota. Minnesota came in first, again, in the United Health Foundations ranking of healthiest states for senior citizens. That makes it two years in a row.
The recognition came mostly from Minnesota's great medical care infrastructure, but we also have a high rate of prescription drug coverage. A strong supply of home health care workers also helped with the scoring. As well as, a high rate of dental care and flu shots.
Minnesota senior citizens also volunteer a lot, nearly 40% volunteer. And 68% of our senior citizens are considered "able bodied" – no disabilities. Of course it's not all about the medical facilities, Minnesota's seniors are more active, including being involved in community activities. Unfortunately Minnesota ranked 23rd in seniors living in poverty at 8.1 percent.
That disparity is shown in other ways. 60 % of senior citizens with a college degree reported their health as good to excellent. Whereas the seniors without a high school education, only 25% could say the same thing.
Minnesota also had the lowest rate of seniors (6.6%) with cognitive problems and the fourth lowest rate of seniors with multiple chronic conditions.
However the future may look differently with the recent changes in the obesity rates. 26.3% of Minnesota's seniors are obese compared to 23.7% a year ago.
We should be proud of Minesota's record of senior citizen health.