PRINEVILLE, OR -- The latest statewide health rankings were released this week, and Crook County saw some improvements from a year ago. Katy Plum, with the Crook County Health Department, tells KBND News, "Our greatest improvement was actually in Health Behaviors. That includes smoking, access to physical activity and one of our greatest improvements was a reduced number of alcohol impaired driving deaths." Crook County went from 25th place to 12th, in health behaviors. She says much of those gains were by simply educating the public on health issues.
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Overall, the county ranks 28th out of Oregon's 36 counties, up from 31st place. Plum says, "Between children living in poverty and the housing issues that we experience here, is what’s contributing to the low rank in social-economic factors." Deschutes County ranked fifth in Oregon, according to the report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; Jefferson County came in last, at 36th place.