Ottawa County is the healthiest county in Michigan

Ottawa County is the healthiest county in Michigan,
according to new national rankings

Ottawa County ranks 1st out of 83 counties in Michigan for health outcomes, according to the 2016 County Health Rankings (CHR), released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. Annual rankings show where counties do well and where there are opportunities for improvement. Since 2014, Ottawa County improved or maintained in 85% of the 35 indicators that make up the ranking. While Ottawa County is the healthiest county in Michigan, the state ranks 35th out of 50 states, according to the 2015 America’s Health Rankings.

Click here for comments from Marcia Mansaray, OCDPH Epidemiologist

Ottawa County’s overall rank and sub-rankings have not changed much from the 2015 CHR study, with the exception of:

  • Health Behaviors went from 3 to 4,
  • Clinical Care went from 3 to 7 (typically ranked 7 or 8),
  • Social and Economic Factors are a 1 from a 3,
  • and Physical Environment is a 39 from a 40
    (Ottawa County’s best score ever in this sub-ranking, which has been as low as 78 in 2012).

Other Ottawa County results to note are:

  • maintained or improved in 69% of the 35 measures,
  • met or exceeded 34% of the target values for the 35 measures,
  • and did as well or better than the State of Michigan in 80% of the 35 measures.


  • low overall mortality
  • low numbers of low birth weight babies
  • low adult smoking and low unemployment

Opportunities for Improvement

  • highest score in excessive drinking (worse than both MI and the target value for excessive drinking)
  • population to healthcare provider ratios have improved, but are still worse than both MI and the target values
  • highest score in the average number of poor mental health days in the past month
  • Physical Environment continues to be the lowest sub-ranking (due to air quality and higher housing costs)

Get Involved!

Check out the Ottawa County Community Health Improvement Plan to see where you can help create even better health outcomes! 


County Health Rankings

Ottawa County rank

Ottawa County Community Health Needs Assessment

Ottawa County Youth Assessment Survey

Ottawa County Health Improvement Plan

Ottawa County Department of Public Health 2016 Annual

Other Ottawa County reports

The Pledge radio 96.5FM interview with The Voice of West Michigan, Parker and Davis

Submitted by Kristina Wieghmink, Ottawa County Department of Public Health


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