How well and how long you live are shaped by where you live. Local health outcomes are often driven by factors like a community’s economic performance, the strength of its education system, the availability and affordability of housing and myriad other elements that affect residents’ overall quality of life.
Knowing how such factors interact to create a healthier community – or a sicker one – is an important first step toward targeting resources where they’ll do the most good. And geography offers a powerful lens through which to focus reform.
The U.S. News Healthiest Communities rankings measure crucial health-related components of society with the aim of empowering citizens, health care leaders and officials to make decisions about policies and practices that can improve health outcomes for all. Guided by a pioneering framework developed by a committee appointed to advise the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the project scores nearly 3,000 counties on 84 indicators across 10 categories that drive overall community health. Population health and equity are the most heavily weighted categories, based on the assessments of more than a dozen leading experts on what matters most to a community’s health.
Below are the 2020 rankings of the top 500 Healthiest Communities nationwide, and how they scored across each of the 10 categories on a scale of zero to 100.
|wdt_ID||Rank||County||Community Vitality||Equity||Economy||Education||Environment||Food & Nutrition||Population Health||Housing||Public Safety||Infrastructure|
|1||1||Los Alamos County, New Mexico||71.2||85.4||76.1||71.2||91.0||58.2||98.4||91.3||88.2||86.6|
|2||2||Douglas County, Colorado||80.6||63.7||87.4||66.5||84.5||60.4||95.5||62.0||68.0||93.2|
|3||3||Falls Church city, Virginia||71.3||45.6||100.0||96.5||65.1||76.9||98.5||34.6||76.8||89.4|
|4||4||Broomfield County, Colorado||71.8||54.3||96.2||70.6||76.0||55.9||88.2||66.0||61.5||95.4|
|5||5||Routt County, Colorado||71.1||57.0||76.0||62.6||88.9||69.5||95.1||62.3||65.1||89.1|
|6||6||Loudoun County, Virginia||80.2||49.7||90.9||82.8||61.9||65.6||90.2||52.4||78.6||72.7|
|7||7||Pitkin County, Colorado||64.1||51.1||75.9||60.5||96.6||77.1||90.3||56.5||86.0||80.5|
|8||8||Carver County, Minnesota||75.3||51.6||97.4||79.9||71.0||44.1||86.0||70.0||67.0||80.9|
|9||9||Summit County, Colorado||61.1||50.9||76.1||74.4||100.0||67.7||96.4||32.8||75.5||93.1|
|10||10||San Miguel County, Colorado||66.6||41.6||69.1||86.2||90.9||94.6||89.5||34.5||73.0||80.7|
|11||11||Ozaukee County, Wisconsin||67.6||60.0||82.7||75.6||71.7||53.7||92.1||59.8||73.5||78.1|
|12||12||Sioux County, Iowa||64.6||64.7||72.1||68.9||73.7||53.8||90.9||73.7||79.0||79.6|
|13||13||Hamilton County, Indiana||77.8||56.4||93.4||78.1||58.6||40.9||83.6||64.0||68.8||85.5|
|14||14||Delaware County, Ohio||79.0||61.7||88.1||77.1||57.7||39.6||82.0||73.6||68.2||79.9|
|15||15||Hunterdon County, New Jersey||66.0||62.0||90.7||92.7||58.3||69.8||85.5||48.4||74.2||52.5|
|16||16||Teton County, Wyoming||71.3||43.1||79.0||76.0||81.7||75.1||88.5||46.8||57.5||93.1|
|17||17||Bremer County, Iowa||66.9||58.4||69.5||74.3||63.6||58.5||86.6||77.1||66.6||91.4|
|18||18||Grundy County, Iowa||67.4||67.0||65.7||73.1||66.4||62.0||83.4||72.7||73.0||81.9|
|19||19||Howard County, Maryland||64.9||49.4||95.3||81.3||53.5||60.3||90.7||51.8||68.2||83.2|
|20||20||Williamson County, Tennessee||86.5||55.8||94.4||74.1||49.4||47.2||82.6||64.6||62.1||74.2|
|21||21||Fairfax County, Virginia||49.7||44.1||85.9||77.8||67.1||67.3||98.9||48.1||79.5||82.5|
|22||22||Morris County, New Jersey||54.5||51.0||85.4||90.9||57.6||60.3||85.9||56.9||82.7||71.5|
|23||23||Chaffee County, Colorado||86.1||58.4||60.8||38.1||97.1||78.9||82.4||56.3||77.2||70.3|
|24||24||Washington County, Minnesota||69.6||52.9||93.6||72.2||65.4||41.9||84.6||61.7||64.7||84.8|
|25||25||Dallas County, Iowa||74.1||38.0||86.5||82.1||64.1||46.5||83.0||70.8||65.1||87.3|
The 2020 Healthiest Communities rankings were created in collaboration with the Aetna Foundation, an independent charitable and philanthropic affiliate of CVS Health. The University of Missouri Extension Center for Applied Research and Engagement Systems – a research institution skilled in understanding natural resource systems, public health risks and community health assessment – performed data collection and analysis.
The overall rankings identify the top 500 Healthiest Communities in America, ranging from No. 1 Los Alamos County, New Mexico, to No. 500 Columbia County, New York.
Beyond the rankings, the Healthiest Communities platform offers data and insight on each of the thousands of communities evaluated, fostering insights and analysis that will educate and inform consumers and policymakers on what’s occurring in their communities. Users also can dive into the data with our interactive explorer tools.
In addition to the overall national rankings, counties were divided into peer groups based on their urban-rural status and economic performance to allow for comparisons among similar communities.
See the top 100 communities in each of the four peer groups:
- Urban, High-Performing Rankings
- Urban, Up-and-Coming Rankings
- Rural, High-Performing Rankings
- Rural, Up-and-Coming Rankings