For the first time in three years, Berks County slipped three spots in the annual health ranking of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties.
But while Berks dropped to 17th best for health outcomes, the overall health outlook for residents remained much the same.
The statistics used to determine the rankings – low birth weights, premature deaths and residents’ reports of being in fair or poor physical or mental health – were nearly identical to last year’s.
“I think overall we have a lot of work to do,” said Mary Hahn, St. Joseph Regional Health Network’s vice president of strategy and business development. “A lot of it does start beyond the walls of hospitals and doctors offices.”