County Health Rankings report: Southern WV unhealthiest in state - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

County Health Rankings report: Southern WV unhealthiest in state

WELCH, W. Va (WVVA)-- An annual report finds that once again, McDowell County is last in the Mountain State in overall health.

The recently released county health rankings report evaluates counties on a variety of factors, from income to drug use, education, and diet and exercise.

McDowell County ranks 55 out of 55 counties in the state for the fifth time. The 10 counties at the bottom of the list remain unchanged from last year. All are in the southern part of the state.

People we spoke with there say they refuse to accept this. Instead, they're working hard to hopefully one day change these statistics.

"We have a strong smokeless tobacco cessation program," mentioned WVU Extension Agent Donald Reed. "[And] when you look at substance abuse, we have a screening and intervention program now in place in our local hospitals..."

He said there are many groups out there in McDowell County working for the greater good, so eventually, there can be change.

"There are many organizations continually improving on these factors in McDowell County. We may be last today, but we will not be last forever," he said.
McDowell may be at the bottom of the list, but other area counties aren't far behind.  Summers sits at 41st, Fayette at 46th, and Wyoming at 49th.

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