Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance-United States, 2001. (Special Reports)

By Grunbaum, Jo Anne; Kann, Laura et al. | Journal of School Health, October 2002 | Go to article overview
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Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance-United States, 2001. (Special Reports)


Grunbaum, Jo Anne, Kann, Laura, Kinchen, Steven A., Williams, Barbara, Ross, James G., Lowry, Richard, Kolbe, Lloyd, Journal of School Health


In the United States, 70.6% of all deaths among youth and young adults aged 10-24 years result from only four causes: motor-vehicle crashes (31.4%), other unintentional injuries (12%), homicide (15.3%), and suicide (11.9%). (1) Substantial morbidity and social problems also result from the approximately 870,000 pregnancies that occur each year among women aged 15-19 years (2) and the estimated (3) million cases of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) that occur each year among persons aged 10-19 years. (3)

Among adults aged [greater than or equal to] 25 years, 64.6% of all deaths in the United States result from cardiovascular disease (41%) and cancer (23.6%). (1) Leading causes of mortality and morbidity among all age groups in the United States are related to the following categories of health behavior: behaviors that contribute to unintentional injuries and violence; tobacco use; alcohol and other drug use; sexual behaviors that contribute to unintended pregnancy and STDs, including human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection; unhealthy dietary behaviors; and physical inactivity. These behaviors are frequently interrelated and often are established during youth and extend into adulthood.

To monitor priority health-risk behaviors in each of these categories among youth and young adults, CDC developed the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS). (4) The YRBSS includes national, state, territorial, and local school-based surveys of students in grades 9-12. National surveys were conducted in 1991, 1993, 1995, 1997, 1999, and 2001. Comparable state and local surveys also were conducted.

 
Year          Number        Number 
of Survey   of States   of Large Cities 
 
1991           26             11 
1993           40             14 
1995           40             17 
1997           38             17 
1999           41             17 
2001           38             19 

This report summarizes results from the 2001 national school-based survey and trends during 1991-2001 in selected risk behaviors. Data from 34 state and 18 local school-based surveys also are included. The national survey and all of the state and local surveys except one were conducted during spring 2001. Hawaii conducted their survey during fall 2001.

METHODS

Sampling

National Youth Risk Behavior Survey. The 2001 national school-based YRBS employed a three-stage cluster sample design to produce a nationally representative sample of students in grades 9-12. The first stage sampling frame contained 1,256 primary sampling units (PSUs), consisting of large counties or groups of smaller, adjacent counties. From the 1,256 PSUs, 57 were selected from 16 strata formed on the basis of the degree of urbanization and the percentage of black and Hispanic students in the PSU. In this report, black students refer to black or African American, non-Hispanic students. In this report, Hispanic students refer to Hispanic or Latino students of any race. PSUs were selected with probability proportional to school enrollment size. At the second sampling stage, 199 schools were selected with probability proportional to school enrollment size. To enable separate analysis of data for black and Hispanic students, schools with substantial numbers of black and Hispanic students were sampled at higher rates than all other schools. The third stage of sampling consisted of randomly selecting one or two intact classes of a required subject (eg, English or social studies) from grades 9-12 at each chosen school. All students in selected classes were eligible to participate in the survey.

A weighting factor was applied to each student record to adjust for nonresponse and for varying probabilities of selection, including those resulting from oversampling of black and Hispanic students. Numbers of students in other racial/ethnic populations (excluding white, black, and Hispanic students) were too low for meaningful analysis in this report.

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