These are the best and worst states for healthcare in the US

Coney Island Hospital is evacuated ahead of Hurricane Irene in New York August 26, 2011. As North Carolina braced on Friday for a direct hit from Hurricane Irene, cities along the East Coast were on alert and millions of beach goers cut short vacations to escape the powerful storm. With more than 50 million people potentially in Irene's path, residents stocked up on food and water and worked to secure homes, vehicles and boats. States, cities, ports, oil refineries and nuclear plants scrambled to activate emergency plans. REUTERS/Allison Joyce (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENVIRONMENT DISASTER) - GM1E78R06H401

Last year the rate and number of uninsured Americans increased for the first time in a decade. Image: REUTERS/Allison Joyce

Rosamond Hutt
Senior Writer, Forum Agenda
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United States

This article is part of: Sustainable Development Impact Summit

A new study has ranked US states from best to worst for healthcare.

WalletHub, a personal finance website, compared all 50 states and the District of Colombia, on cost, access and outcomes.

These are the top 10 best states in the US for healthcare in 2019 Image: WalletHub
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Minnesota, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, District of Columbia and Vermont came top of the list.

At the bottom? Alaska, North Carolina, Mississippi, South Carolina and Arkansas.

The study was based on 43 metrics including life expectancy, monthly insurance premiums, insured rates and costs of medical visits.

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The cost of health

The United States spends more on healthcare than any other country in the world. In 2017, 17.9% of US GDP went on healthcare. Put another way, that’s more than $10,500 per person per year.

But despite spending roughly twice as much as other high-income countries on medical care, the US lags behind its peers on key health measures such as insurance coverage, life expectancy and infant mortality rates.

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The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare or the ACA, expanded access to healthcare. But last year the rate and number of uninsured Americans increased for the first time in a decade. Some 8.5% of the US population didn’t have health insurance at all in 2018, compared to 7.9% in 2017, according to new figures from the US Census Bureau.

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