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J Adolesc Health. 2006 Apr;38(4):401-8.

Self-rated health among U.S. adolescents.

Author information

1
Department of Sociology, Population Program, Institute of Behavioral Science, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, Colorado 80309-0327, USA. boardman@colorado.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

This article investigates the meaning of subjective health assessments for younger respondents by examining the temporal stability of self-rated health (SRH) among adolescents. Two competing understandings of SRH are tested: SRH as a spontaneous health assessment or as an enduring self-concept.

METHODS:

Using data from two waves of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (n = 13,511), an intra-class correlation coefficient and a weighted Kappa estimate are calculated to assess the test-retest reliability for SRH. Self-rated health (T2) is then modeled as a function of SRH (T1), physical health (T1), and mental health (T1), and changes in physical and mental health (T2-T1).

RESULTS:

SRH is found to be moderately stable over repeated observations (K = .40; rho = .55) among adolescents. Findings from multivariate analyses suggest that SRH (T2) is largely determined by SRH (T1) and less so by changes in physical or psychological health status (T2-T1).

CONCLUSIONS:

SRH among adolescents is in part a spontaneous health assessment but it is best understood as an enduring self-concept.

PMID:
16549301
PMCID:
PMC3157914
DOI:
10.1016/j.jadohealth.2005.01.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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