You have a long time to live

There's been some brow furrowing this week in the public health community after a study reported that life expectancies have actually started to go down in parts of the United States.

Thankfully, the Capital Region isn't one of those places. But how exactly does this area stack up when it comes to living a long life? We picked through the excel file so you don't have to...

The researchers looked at life expectancy at birth in every county for every year between 1961 and 1999, which was the last year for which they could round up all the relevant data. We just picked the beginning and end of that span to compare. Life expectancy for the entire US was 77.8 years in 2004.

county 1961 1999 change
Albany 69.4 77.94 +8.54
Schenectady 70.83 78.25 +7.42
Rensselaer 69.1 77.06 +7.96
Saratoga 70.47 79.21 +8.74
Entire US 69.7* 76.7 +7

Fine print:
+ County data came from the PLoS Medicine paper "The Reversal of Fortunes: Trends in County Mortality and Cross-County Mortality Disparities in the United States."
+ National data came from the CDC report Health, United State, 2007 -- and that 1961 number is actually from 1960.

The Bottom Line

Saratoga County has highest life expectancy among the four counties -- and it ranks 5th best in New York State. (Westchester County is #1 at 79.65 years.)

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