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Defeat Diabetes
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US Health-Risk Surveillance Results

Posted: Sunday, February 14, 2010

Results from January 2007 to December 2007 from the Behavioral Risk Surveillance System (BRFSS), an ongoing telephone survey of US adults on health-risk behaviors and the use of preventative healthcare services related to the leading causes of death and disability in the United States, were reported last week.

"Chronic diseases (e.g., heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes) are the leading causes of death in the United States," write Pranesh Chowdhury, MBBS, MPH, from the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and colleagues. "Controlling health risk behaviors (e.g., smoking, physical inactivity, poor diet, and excessive drinking) and using preventive health-care services (e.g., cancer, hypertension, and cholesterol screenings) can reduce morbidity and mortality from chronic diseases. Monitoring health-risk behaviors, chronic health conditions, and preventive care practices is essential to develop health promotion activities, intervention programs, and health policies at the state, city, and county levels."

BRFSS is a state-based, random-digit-dialed household telephone survey of noninstitutionalized persons 18 years or older who live in the United States. In addition to reporting 2007 findings for all 50 states, the article also includes data from the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, the Virgin Islands, 184 metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas (MMSAs), and 298 counties.

Healthy People 2010 (HP 2010) objectives have been identified to monitor health behaviors and the use of preventive health services. BRFSS data are used by local and state health departments and federal agencies to detect populations at increased risk for certain health behaviors and chronic diseases and conditions and to assess use of preventive services. BRFSS data are also used to direct, implement, monitor, and assess public health programs and policies intended to decrease morbidity and improve survival.

Some of the 2007 BRFSS findings have shown that certain HP 2010 goals have not been reached. In 2007, no state or territory, MMSA, or county achieved the HP 2010 goals for healthcare coverage, influenza or pneumococcal vaccination, high blood pressure, or high blood cholesterol.

Prevalence estimates of risk behaviors, chronic conditions, and the use of preventive services varied dramatically among different regions in 2007.

Ranges of prevalence estimates for states and territories, and for MMSAs and counties, respectively, were as follows:

    * Reporting fair or poor health: 11% to 32%, and 6% to 31%
    * No reported leisure-time physical activity: 17% to 44%, and 9% to 38%
    * Participating in moderate or vigorous physical activity: 31% to 61%, and 36% to 67%
    * Participating in only vigorous physical activity: 19% to 40%, and 15% to 45%
    * Overweight status: 33% to 40%, and 26% to 47%
    * Obesity in adults aged 20 years or older: 20% to 34%, and 14% to 38%
    * Diagnosis of diabetes: 5% to 13%, and 2% to 17%
    * Diagnosis of high blood pressure: 21% to 35%, and 16% to 38%
    * Diagnosis of arthritis: 14% to 36%, and 16% to 40%
    * Asthma: 5% to 10%, and 3% to 13%
    * Healthcare coverage: 71% to 94%, and 51% to 97%
    * Cholesterol tested within the preceding 5 years: 66% to 85%, and 58% to 90%
    * Need for special equipment because of health problems: 3% to 10%, and 3% to 14%
    * Binge drinking among adults: 3% to 8% for states and territories
    * Activity limitation because of physical, mental, or emotional problems: 10% to 26% for states and territories
    * History of coronary heart disease: 2% to 14% for states and territories, MMSAs, and counties
    * Diagnosis of stroke: 1% to 7% for states and territories, MMSAs, and counties
    * Daily consumption of 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables: 14% to 33% for states and territories, 16% to 34% for MMSAs, and 14% to 37% for counties
    * Cigarette smoking: 9% to 31% for states and territories, 7% to 34% for MMSAs, and 7% to 30% for counties
    * High blood cholesterol: 28% to 43% for states and territories, 29% to 49% for MMSAs, and 26% to 51% for counties
    * Adults aged 65 years or older who had annual influenza vaccination: 32% to 80% for states and territories, 48% to 83% for MMSAs, and 44% to 88% for counties
    * Adults aged 65 years or older who had pneumococcal vaccination: 26% to 74% for states and territories, 44% to 83% for MMSAs, and 39% to 87% for counties

The findings underscore the continued need for surveillance of health-risk behaviors, chronic diseases and conditions, and the use of preventive services."

Source: Diabetes In Control: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report Feb 5, 2010;59:1-220.

 
 
 
 
 
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