One Hudson Valley county is considered the healthiest county in New York State while another is one of the unhealthiest counties.

Annually since 2010, the Robert Wood Foundation has released its Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s County Health Rankings and Roadmap. The organization released its results for 2019 for every county across America on Tuesday.

"The annual Rankings provide a revealing snapshot of how health is influenced by where we live, learn, work and play. They provide a starting point for change in communities," the Robert Wood Foundation writes on its website.

The study looks into a number of factors including health behaviors, clinical care, physical environment, and social and environmental factors. In 2019, a major factor in the ratings was affordable housing.

Our homes, and those of our neighbors, play a critical role in shaping our health and the health of the whole community. When our homes are near quality schools and good jobs, it’s easier to get a quality education and earn living wages. When people live near grocery stores where nutritious food is available and affordable, eating healthy is easier. Green spaces and parks encourage active lifestyles. By contrast, inside our homes things like lead, mold, smoke, and other toxins can make us sick. And when too much of a paycheck goes toward the rent or mortgage, it makes it hard to afford the doctor, cover utility bills, or maintain reliable transportation to work or school. Owning a home can help build savings, providing stability and wealth over time," the Robert Wood Foundation said.

In New York, Rockland County was rated the healthiest county in New York State while Sullivan County places 61 out of 62 counties.

Officials from Sullivan County are disappointed with the ranking, but believe the county is moving in the right direction.

“I am hopeful that we are headed in the right direction, because there are so many positive things happening that will help improve overall health and quality of life in the County in the long run,” Sullivan County Public Health Director Nancy McGraw said in a press release. “It takes many years of targeted focus and investment in a variety of community initiatives to change overall health rankings, but we are already starting to see some of the underlying statistics, which drive the rankings, improve. In fact, a ‘Health in All Policies’ approach continues to build momentum. These efforts, over time, will help to keep the momentum going in the right direction, but it takes a few years for the data to catch up with current efforts.”

Below are the rankings, out of 62 New York counties, for the local counties.

1) Rockland County
3) Westchester County
6) Putnam County
13) Dutchess County
18) Orange County
31) Ulster County
61) Sullivan County

Click the highlighted above links to find out more about your county.

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