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December 7, 2011

New Jersey jumped six positions in the United Health Foundation's "America's Health Rankings," from 17th in the nation to 11th. The rankings are determined by 23 measures that include smoking, obesity, binge drinking, percentage of population with health insurance, public health funding, violent crime, air pollution and rates of cancer and cardiovascular deaths.

The Garden State performed well when judged by criteria such as rate of high school graduation, smoking, infant mortality, occupational fatalities, and children in poverty. New Jersey performed much more poorly in terms of early prenatal care and rate of immunizations -- for both of which the state ranked 45th. The study also pointed out that the rate of preventable hospitalizations decreased from 76.2 to 71.6 discharges per 1,000 Medicare enrollees and that obesity has increased to 24.8 percent of the population. More details are available online.

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