FRAMINGHAM — A new analysis examines how each state’s mental-health data compares across the country, with Massachusetts ranking significantly above the national average.
The study, conducted by Leafwell, examined various health indicators for each state, including levels of frequent mental distress, physical inactivity, number of poor mental-health days, life expectancy, access to exercise, and median household income. An overall health score was calculated for each state out of 100, leading to a ranking based on these critical health metrics.
Massachusetts calculated a total score of 83, placing it second in the overall national rankings, behind only Hawaii. Rounding out the top five are New Jersey, California, and Colorado.
With a $89,600 median annual income 30.0% higher than the US average, Massachusetts exceeds the average life expectancy by two years, reaching the age of 80. The Commonwealth experiences fewer poor mental health days, as only 13% of the population reportedly show frequent mental distress, compared to other states which collectively report 14% on average. Massachusetts also has a relatively high 81% physical activity rate among the population, as 95% of residents have access to exercise opportunities; the national average is only 81%.
“As we delve into the intricacies of Massachusetts’s health metrics, it becomes evident that factors such as access to exercise opportunities, median household income, and mental-health resources play pivotal roles in shaping the well-being of communities,” said Mitchell Doucette, director of Research at Leafwell. “By highlighting the attributes of Massachusetts and other leading states in the top rankings, we aim to inspire conversations and initiatives that prioritize comprehensive approaches to improve the quality of life for residents nationwide.”