Life expectancy fell by 1.5 years in the United States in 2020. The decline, driven by the COVID-19 pandemic and the opioid crisis, represents the most pronounced regression in public health in the United States since World War II.
While the most recent dip in life expectancy in the U.S. is alarming, there are many parts of the country where poor health outcomes and other socioeconomic hardships have long been the norm.
Using an index of three measures — life expectancy at birth, bachelor’s degree attainment, and poverty rate — 24/7 Wall St. identified the worst counties to live in in every state.
Florida is one of the fastest growing states in the country, reporting 8% population growth over the last five years. Hamilton County, however, located in northern Florida along the Georgia border, is bucking the state trend, reporting a 1% population decline over the same period.
The worst county to live in in the Sunshine State, Hamilton has a poverty rate of 29.9% — more than double the statewide rate of 14.0%. Health outcomes are also lagging in the county as the local life expectancy at birth is 76.2 years, four years shy of the statewide average.