Buncombe ranked 17th healthiest county in North Carolina

Buncombe County is the 17th healthiest in the state, according to the County Health Rankings project. According to the rankings, the county has excellent health behavior and clinical care but problems with morbidity and environmental quality.

The figures, released today, rank Buncombe’s clinical care as the third best in the state, with a large number of primary care providers and few preventable hospital stays. The county’s health behaviors came in fifth. Buncombe residents were less obese and had more access to healthy foods than most counties, exceeding state averages and national goals in both areas.

“The rankings are just a starting point. They help us see where our community’s work is making a difference, such as the work to improve access to high quality health care,” Gibbie Harris, the county’s health director, said in an announcement. “

However, the picture is not all roses, and the excellent rankings in the above areas were counterbalanced by the amount of people reporting poor health days (especially mental health), poor air quality and low access to recreational facilities. Even in areas like obesity, where the county rates fairly well, there remain problems. Harris noted that obesity remains a health priority in Buncombe because eight in ten non-whites in the county struggle with obesity issues.

“Since we live in a state that ranks 35th in the nation for overall health (American Health Rankings),” Harris writes. “We aren’t really focused on being #1 as much as we are paying attention to the benchmarks, and to our disparities in health that must be our focus if we want to see improvements overall”. 

— David Forbes, senior news reporter


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4 thoughts on “Buncombe ranked 17th healthiest county in North Carolina

  1. Tom Johnson

    Author neglected to mention that there are 100 counties in NC. Seems a necessary fact, since 17 out 25 would suck but 17 out of 100 is pretty good. Aren’t there editors anymore?

  2. parrish rhodes

    Tom – thank you for that information – I was horrified at the ’17’, and had no idea there were so many counties in NC! – so your mentioning it was really important –

  3. dpewen

    I see many obese people here in Asheville, especially the young! Pretty scary! I guess these obese people think they are living a healthy lifestyle? It is a shame … obesity is a huge problem in amerika!!

  4. Aaron Penland

    I guess that 17 out of 100 is pretty good, 35th out of the nation needs some work. I do however have a question, Was the study created just to determine if we are eating healthy or not? I am fairly certain that none of the statistics came from residents of the South Asheville area where I live near the abandoned CTS of Asheville site. WE HAVE DONE OUR OWN HEALTH SURVEY AND HAVE FOUND OVER 80 CANCER RELATED DEATHS WITHIN A ONE MILE RADIUS OF THE PLANT. OF THESE 49 WERE NON-HODGKIN LYMPHOMA. When we reported these findings to the CDC they said that was not possible to have that many NHL. We have discovered a scandal full of lies deceit and outright illegal actions by EPA Region IV that can be substantiated with EPA’s own documents and information. If your curious please look up CTS Groundwater Contamination site on Mills Gap rd. The contamination has migrated up to 3/4 of a mile from the plant and is now showing up in peoples wells. EPA has tried to hide this by falsifying documents and withholding information from the public. Please take the time to look into it and if you wish to get involved e-mail me penlandda@yahoo.com. This could easily be in your backyard as we have a multitude of hazardous sites here in Buncombe County.

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