Among the nation's 52 largest metropolitan areas that Gallup surveyed in 2009, the Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) was ranked #8 for well-being in the nation. The regions are based on the Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) as defined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget. In many cases, more than one city is included in the same MSA.
The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index score measures for each city an average of six sub-indexes, which individually examine life evaluation, emotional health, work environment, physical health, healthy behaviors, and access to basic necessities. The overall composite score and each of the six sub-indexes' scores are calculated on a scale from 0 to 100, where 100 represents fully realized well-being. Gallup and Healthways initiated the Well-Being Index in January 2008.