LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Want to live well into old age? Statistically, Arkansas may not be your best choice.

In an August report by the National Vital Statistics Reports, Arkansas ranks 45th of the 50 states and the District of Columbia for life expectancy. The survey is based upon data tables through 2020, including mortality tables and Medicare data.

In the report the life expectancy for an Arkansas resident was 73.8 years. This was derived from the life expectancy for an Arkansas male, 71.1 years, and female of 76.6 years. While we can thank the state females for raising the curve, fair to point out that the female life expectancy rank is 46 for Arkansas females, one point lower compared to the state average.

The 73.8 average expectancy for Arkansas is 1.9 years lower than the 2019 study.

Southern states are the lowest ranking, with Oklahoma at 45, one above Arkansas, and Tennessee, Kentucky, Alabama, Louisiana, West Virginia and Mississippi all finishing below Arkansas.

Mississippi finished lowest, with a 71.9-year expectancy, 68.6 for males and 75.2 for females. Hawaii finished first, with an 80.7-year life expectancy, 77.6 for males and 83.8 for females. The national life expectancy average is 77 years.

The survey is based upon data tables through 2020, including mortality tables and Medicare data.