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For each measure, the raw data are obtained from secondary sources and presented as “value.” The score for each state is based on the following formula:
This “z score” indicates the number of standard deviations a state is above or below the national value. A 0.00 indicates a state has the same value as the nation. States with higher values than the national value have a positive score; states below the national value have a negative score. To prevent an extreme score from exerting excessive influence, the maximum score for a measure is capped at +/- 2.00. If a US value is not available for a measure, the mean of all state values is used with the exception of measures from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). For BRFSS measures, the median of the state values is used for the US value to conform to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tradition. Overall score is calculated by adding the scores of each measure multiplied by its assigned weight (the percentage of total overall ranking). The overall ranking is the ordering of each state according to the overall score. The ranking of individual measures is the ordering of each state according to the measure’s value, with the exception of Infectious Disease and Immunizations-Adolescents, which are ranked according to score. Ties in values are assigned equal ranks. Not all changes in rank are statistically significant.

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