America, you will have smug New Yorkers around a little while longer than perhaps you'd prefer: data from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation shows that Manhattan residents will live about three years longer than the national average. In data highlighted by The Washington Post's Sarah Kliff, the national life expectancy for men, as of 2009, stood at 76.2 years. For women, it's 81.3 years. In Manhattan, men live to 79 on average and women live to 84.2. That's a difference of 2.8 years and 2.9 years respectively.
But residents of Manhattan aren't even the best off among the boroughs. For that, you'd have to look to Queens where women live to 84.4 years, on average, and men live to 79.6 years. An article in the medical journal The Lancet notes that not only do New Yorkers live longer than the national average, their life expectancy is rising faster than any other place. That's in part because healthier people have moved into the city through the decades, but The Lancet also gives credit to the aggressive policies of the city's health department. Mayor Michael Bloomberg will no doubt be emboldened in his quest to prevent New Yorkers from making mistakes. The figures for life expectancies for babies born in New York City boroughs are at right (these do not apply to you) but The Lancet has a nice chart showing how the rates have changed over the years. One thing that jumps out is that biggest rise happened in the 1990s, when Rudy Giuliani was mayor, lest Bloomberg start feeling too good about himself.
Still, congratulations, New York. But before you take this as further evidence that you're the center of the universe, note that Marin County, California, actually offers the highest male life expectancy. Men there make it to 81.6 years. Meanwhile, the women of Collier County, Florida, lead the nation with a life expectancy of 85.8.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.