Social Determinants of Health and 1 more...less...

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Number of violent crime incidents per 100,000


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Story Behind the Curve

Source:  Last accessed 6/29/2022

Violent Crime

U.S. Value: 379

Healthiest State: Maine: 115

Least-healthy State: Alaska: 867

Definition: Number of murders, rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults per 100,000 population

Data Source & Year(s): Federal Bureau of Investigation, Uniform Crime Reporting Program, 2019

Suggested Citation: America's Health Rankings analysis of Federal Bureau of Investigation, Uniform Crime Reporting Program, United Health Foundation,, accessed 2022.


Families, neighborhoods and communities are all affected when violent crime occurs. Violent crimes cause physical harm as well as social and emotional distress including injury, disability, premature death, depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder. Violent crime can lead to less physical activity. When personal safety is threatened, individuals are less likely to choose to walk or bike to their destination, regardless of neighborhood income levels.

Violent crimes place a financial burden on hospitals and health care systems. Costs — including violence preparedness, prevention, as well as security and safety within health care facilities — were estimated at $2.7 billion in 2016. The overall estimated economic burden of violent crime was $65 billion in lost productivity and $6 billion in direct medical costs in 2007. Researchers estimate the following per-offense total costs: $9 million per homicide, $241,000 per rape/sexual assault, $107,000 per aggravated assault and $42,000 per robbery (2008 dollars).


According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, populations who experienced higher rates of being a victim of violent crime (excluding homicide) in 2019 include:

  • Persons ages 12 and older who identify their race as other, including Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, American Indian/Alaska Native and multiracial persons.  
  • Persons ages 12-24 compared with other age groups; adults ages 65 and older had the lowest rate.
  • Persons with an annual household income less than $25,000 than those with higher household incomes.


Healthy People 2030 has several goals related to the prevention of violent crime, including:

  • Reducing the rate of minors and young adults who commit violent crimes.
  • Reducing the rate of adolescents and young adults who are victims of violent crimes.
  • Reducing the number of homicides per 100,000 population.
What Works


Violence prevention has been a priority among health officials for decades and a number of intervention programs have been established. Strategies to address violent crime may require a thorough investigation of its root causes to determine the best route of intervention. Resources include: 

  • The National Institute of Justice’s database of evidence-based programs and practices for violent crime prevention. 
  • The Community Guide, which evaluates interventions and recommends those with demonstrated effectiveness in violence prevention, particularly for children and youth. 
  • Cure Violence, which applies an epidemiological approach of disease outbreaks to violence and has been found to be effective in several communities. 

Source:  Last accessed 6/29/2022


Corrective Action
PoE  Last accessed 11 July 2022

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