Lincoln County ranked 49 out of 72 counties for health outcomes and 38 for health factors, according to the seventh annual County Health Rankings, released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute (UWPHI).
Lincoln County Highlights:
- Premature death rate is still high. Lincoln County is in med range compared to other counties in the state with the leading cause of premature death being cancer, followed by heart disease.
- Alcohol-impaired driving deaths continues to rise as well as sexually transmitted infections
- Lincoln County continues to see a lack of mental health providers compared to other areas of the state and a slight decrease in primary care providers.
- Unemployment is one of our biggest improvement areas. Lincoln County had one of the highest unemployment rate of 11% during the recession and in 2016 we are at 5%.
The Rankings have become an important tool for communities that want to improve health for all. Lincoln County has a number of initiatives underway to expand health opportunities for residents. Primary focus has been on our county’s community health priority areas identified by community partners in 2012. These priorities include access to oral health, mental health, and nutrition. Progress is being made by community coalitions to bring awareness of these issues. Such activities include supporting and creating community gardens, FoodShare access at Farmers’ Markets, training in Mental Health First Aid, campaigns on the importance of seeing your dentist and eating healthy. For more information on getting involved in these issues, contact Shelley Hersil, Lincoln County Health Department, 715-539-1369 or firstname.lastname@example.org.