DATA METHODOLOGY


Our research aim was to use the 500 Cities data, for 2016 and 2017, to help identify cities, neighborhoods, and populations in the state of Georgia where public health issues are currently most pressing.

To do this, we developed a set of ranking methods for comparing cities and census tracts across both individual and composite health characteristics.  For each city, an overall health ranking was developed along with rankings for the three main indicator groupings of health outcomes, prevention, and unhealthy behaviors.  This produced values between 1 and 500 for national rankings and between 1 and 11 for comparison among only the cities in the state of Georgia.  For each census tract and across each of the 27 health indicators, a national percentile rank value was calculated.

The criteria are as follows:

  • The Degree of Disparity criterion identifies health issues exhibiting the greatest variability among census tracts across a city.
  • The Raw Magnitude criterion identifies health issues impacting the largest overall number of people in a city or selected area.
  • The Proportional Magnitude criterion identifies health issues with higher than expected rates at both the city- and census tract-level.
  • The Ranking Threshold criterion identifies health issues at the city- and tract-level which fall above or below a set ranking threshold.
  • The Change criterion identifies indicators and rankings which showed significant change between the 2016 and 2017 datasets.

We report on all of the most recent 27 health indicators modeled by the CDC, including those from the 2016 published dataset and those updated in 2017. Change values are calculated for the indicators that were updated in 2017.

The indicators are reported at both the tract and city levels for the four target cities.

In addition, national indicator-specific percentile rankings are calculated and reported at the tract level.  Indicator-specific and composite national and state ordinal rankings (between 1 to 500 and 1 to 11, respectively) are calculated and reported at the city level.

Overall Health Rankings

  • 1=Most Healthy; 500=Least Healthy
  • Composite of all 27 Health indicators
  • Ordered ranking of the average of the standardized rank values of all 27 health indicator

Health Outcomes Rankings

  • 1=Most Healthy; 500=Least Healthy
  • Ordered ranking of the average of the standardized rank values of the following indicators:
    • Arthritis among adults; High blood pressure among adults; Cancer among adults; Current asthma among adults; Coronary heart disease among adults; Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease among adults; Diagnosed diabetes among adults; High cholesterol among adults who have been screened in the past 5 years; Chronic kidney disease among adults; Mental health not good for 14 or more days among adults; Physical health not good for 14 or more days among adults; Stroke among adults; and All teeth lost among adults

Prevention Rankings

  • 1=Most Healthy; 500=Least Healthy
  • Ordered ranking of the average of the standardized rank values of the following indicators:
    • Taking medicine for high blood pressure control among adults with high blood pressure; Visits to doctor for routine checkup within the past year among adults; Cholesterol screening among adults; Fecal occult blood test, sigmoidoscopy, or colonoscopy among adults; Older adult men who are up to date on a core set of clinical preventive services: Flu shot past year, PPV shot ever, Colorectal cancer screening; Older adult women who are up to date on a core set of clinical preventive services: Flu shot past year, PPV shot ever, Colorectal cancer screening, and Mammogram past 2 years; Visits to dentist or dental clinic among adults; Mammography use among women; and Papanicolaou smear use among adult women

Unhealthy Behaviors Rankings

  • 1=Most Healthy; 500=Least Healthy
  • Ordered ranking of the average of the standardized rank values of the following indicators:
    • Binge drinking among adults; Current smoking among adults; No leisure-time physical activity among adults; Obesity among adults; and Sleeping less than 7 hours among adults

4 Target Cities in comparison to Georgia’s largest cities

CityOverall Health RankHealth Outcomes RankPrevention RankUnhealthy Behaviors Rank
Albany485490305483
Athens375433238332
Atlanta266374123308
Augusta428468205451
Columbus396436174431
Johns Creek819847
Macon492497386491
Roswell416618114
Sandy Springs428516103
Savannah433457239450
Warner Robins381429185413

Download the Excel file with rankings for all 500 Cities