News isn't good for IN and KY in new study of America's healthie - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

News isn't good for IN and KY in new study of America's healthiest states

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A new study ranking the health of America's states has just come out and the news isn't so good for Indiana or Kentucky. 

The Hoosier State came in at 41, Kentucky was even worse as the 44th unhealthiest state. Illinois ranked 30th.

This the first time in 20 years Indiana has ranked in the bottom 10. Indiana's overall rank in this year's report is 41st, making the Hoosier State the 9th unhealthiest state in the U.S. 

Why should we care? Brian Kessler, Director of Respiratory Care at St. Mary's says it could mean higher medical costs.

"You know, when we're 9th worst as far as health care costs, health care reform, this number, you know, it scares us. You know, Medicare and Medicaid, they want to work with us as hospitals, but when we have a high instance of smoking it just shows we have our work cut out for us," Kessler said.

Smoking is more common in Indiana than in 43 other states, but Kessler says the new smoking ordinance is a step in the right direction.

"I think that will over time improve the quality of air that we breathe as non smokers and it also help detour some of youth from starting smoking," Kessler said.

Obesity rates and diabetes rates were also a factor. More than a half a million adults in Indiana have diabetes. 

Diana Emmick, a certified diabetes educator, says the community is becoming more aware. 

"I see a lot more initiatives out there and keeping people active and motivating people to become more active," Emmick said.

Hopefully Hoosiers will continue in that direction.

Kentucky ranked highest in the country in terms of 'percentage of people still smoking.' 

In case you're wondering, Vermont topped the list as the healthiest. 

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