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Maine is the 13th healthiest state for seniors in the nation, new report says

Betsy Sheen, David Sheen
Robert F. Bukaty
AP file
In this April 1, 2020 photo, Betsy and David Sheen are joined by their dogs as they walk up their driveway after getting the mail at their home in Bowdoinham, Maine. The driveway walks help them to get exercise while dealing with the isolation brought on by the coronavirus.

According to the nonprofit United Health Foundation, 22% of Mainers are 65 or older, but Maine is ranked as the 13th healthiest state for seniors in the nation.

Just 37% of Maine seniors have multiple chronic health conditions, and Maine also has a high rate of cancer screenings.

About 72% of Maine seniors received a flu vaccine in 2020, a 17% increase over the last decade.

But there are negative marks for Maine as well. Nearly 22 Maine seniors died by suicide for every 100,000 deaths, a rate that places Maine among the worst 10 states in the country.

And the state spent only about $28 in 2019 for each adult over the age of 60, a community support ratio that puts Maine in the bottom half of all states.

The United Health Foundation tracks improvements, challenges and disparities in health care among seniors over the course of the last decade. Utah earned the No. 1 ranking this year. Several states in New England were in the top 10, including Vermont, which placed second among all states in the nation, Connecticut fourth and New Hampshire sixth.

Massachusetts placed just above Maine at number 10. Mississippi ranked last among all 50 states.