State- and sex-specific prevalence of selected characteristics; Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 1994 and 1995
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State- and sex-specific prevalence of selected characteristics; Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 1994 and 1995

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  • English

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    • Description:
      PROBLEM/CONDITION: High-risk behaviors (e.g., cigarette smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and physical inactivity) and lack of preventive health care (e.g., screening for cancer) are associated with chronic disease- and injury-related morbidity and mortality. States use the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) to collect data about these modifiable health behaviors and to monitor trends and changes in the prevalence of behavioral risk factors in state populations. BRFSS data also are used to monitor progress toward the year 2000 national health objectives. REPORTING PERIOD: 1994 and 1995. DESCRIPTION OF SYSTEM: The BRFSS is a state-based telephone survey of the civilian, noninstitutionalized, adult (persons > or =18 years of age) population. In 1994, 49 states and the District of Columbia participated in the BRFSS; in 1995, 50 states participated. RESULTS: As in previous years, there were state-specific variations in the prevalences of high-risk behaviors, awareness of certain medical conditions, use of preventive health services, and health-care coverage. Selected findings for 1995 were that 22.4% of adults reported being current cigarette smokers (range: 13.2%-27.8%); the percentage of adults who reported driving after drinking too much alcohol ranged from 0.6% to 5.2% (median: 2.3%); and among adults aged > or =65 years, 36.8% (range: 11.4%-46.6%) reported ever having had a pneumococcal vaccination and 59.2% (range: 44.2%-70.0%) reported having had an influenza vaccination within the past 1 year. INTERPRETATION: State-specific variations in prevalence may reflect differences in population composition, socioeconomic factors, state laws enacted to discourage high-risk behaviors, levels of effort to screen for certain diseases and physiological conditions, and other factors. ACTION TAKEN: States continue to use the BRFSS to monitor risk factors associated with chronic disease- and injury-related morbidity and mortality and to develop public health programs and policies to address these problems. BRFSS data continue to be important in assessing progress toward national year 2000 and state health objectives.
    • Content Notes:
      Eve Powell-Griner,.John E. Anderson, Wilmon Murphy, coordinators for the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, Behavioral Surveillance Branch, Division of Adult and Community Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.

      Also available via the World Wide Web.

      Includes bibliographical references (p. 28-29).

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