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The 6 Best Places to Retire for Great Healthcare

Many important factors must be considered when searching for a place to spend your golden years. While an area’s average cost of living, housing, weather, and entertainment options can impact your overall quality of life, it’s also critical to remember that, when it comes to your health and wellness, where you choose to live can make a significant difference.

The following guide discusses the healthcare factors that make a state an attractive retirement location and highlights a few that stand out. 

Healthcare Factors That Make Certain States Better for Retirement

When planning for your retirement, keep in mind that the access, cost, and quality of your healthcare can have a significant impact on both your well-being and your financial stability. When comparing your options, consider the following factors:

Access to Healthcare

Certain states offer residents an extensive network of hospitals, clinics, and medical facilities. They may also have high numbers of healthcare providers per capita, helping to ensure you can easily find qualified medical professionals and receive timely care.


States that offer affordable healthcare can help you save on your medical expenses and stretch your retirement savings further. Some cost factors to consider include the average prescription drug prices per capita, average Medicare supplement premiums, average out-of-pocket spending, and the average cost of nursing and/or assisted living homes per capita.

Quality of Healthcare

Many factors can influence a state’s overall quality of healthcare, including having renowned hospitals and research institutions, advanced medical technology, and top-notch healthcare systems. Measuring overall quality requires assessing variables such as patient outcomes, safety, and satisfaction ratings. Some states stand out thanks to their focus on providing high-quality senior care, specialized healthcare, and comprehensive preventative care.

6 States to Retire in for Great Healthcare

The following states have been recognized for providing residents with accessible, high-quality, affordable healthcare and top-rated healthcare systems. 

1. Minnesota

Minnesota offers residents low average monthly insurance premiums and low mortality due to heart disease compared to other states. The state also has a high number of healthcare facilities per capita and has the third-highest life expectancy in the U.S., behind Washington and Hawaii.

Minnesota is known to be a friendly state with low crime rates, an affordable cost of living, and an excellent music, art, and food scene. If you enjoy outdoor activities, you may also love exploring Minnesota’s 10,000 lakes, 70 state parks, and five national parks. From hiking, walking, and cycling to boating, camping, and fishing, there’s no shortage of exciting things to keep active retirees busy in Minnesota.  

2. North Dakota

North Dakota is known for having low per capita prescription drug prices and a low number of doctors who have opted out of Medicare. It also has a relatively low cost of living and healthcare costs below the national average

Located along the Canadian border, North Dakota is sparsely populated, making it an attractive option for retirees who want to live a quiet lifestyle in an uncongested setting with lots of clean, fresh air. It also has a relatively low cost of living, affordable housing, and reasonably low state income tax rates.

3. Massachusetts

Massachusetts residents may benefit from the state’s high-quality hospice care and many nursing homes. The state also has many highly ranked healthcare facilities, including Massachusetts General Hospital, ranked third in Newsweek’s list of the Top 100 Hospitals in the World. Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital also ranked 17th on the same list. 

Other advantages of retiring in Massachusetts include low crime rates, a vibrant culture, and a spectacular landscape that ranges from rocky hills to gorgeous beaches and everything in between. The area is also known for its wealth of fine dining experiences and excellent options for enjoying outdoor activities.

4. California

California’s healthcare cost is kept at a reasonable rate for seniors, thanks to the state’s high number of prescription drug plans and low average Medicare Advantage out-of-pocket maximums. However, the state has many doctors who have opted out of Medicare, which could concern some.

Many retirees are attracted to California’s beautiful weather. The warm summers and mild winters found in much of the state may benefit seniors with certain health conditions, such as respiratory issues or arthritis. The attractive weather may also help retirees stay active and enjoy outdoor activities, which could contribute to overall health and wellness.

5. Nebraska

Retirees looking for a quiet, rural lifestyle may consider moving to Nebraska. The state has a large number of Medicare rural health clinics per capita, helping to ensure easy access to healthcare services. Nebraska is a peaceful state known for its friendly communities and affordable cost of living. It also has a rich natural landscape with a wide range of opportunities for outdoor activities like camping, hiking, fishing, and biking.

6. Hawaii

There are several potential benefits to spending your retirement years in Hawaii. On average, residents here have a longer life expectancy than those in other states. There are also a high number of senior specialists per capita, and Hawaii has a state-of-the-art public hospital system.

While the cost of living in Hawaii is relatively high compared to the contiguous United States, the beautiful weather, scenery, and laid-back lifestyle may offer you the retirement you desire.

Choosing the Right State for Your Retirement Healthcare Needs

As you begin to consider the next phase of your life, remember that healthcare factors can play a vital role in your overall quality of life. The cost, quality, and access to healthcare services in the state where you live impact your well-being and your financial security. Whether you choose to live in one of the states listed above or consider another location, it’s helpful to consider whether the state will likely support your healthcare needs.

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You’re just a few steps away from seeing your Medicare Advantage plan options.

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