DefinitionPercentage of adults aged 18 years and older who reported seven or more days when their physical health was not good in the past 30 days
NumeratorNumber of survey respondents who reported seven or more days when their physical health was not good in the past 30 days
DenominatorTotal number of survey respondents excluding those with missing, "Don't know/Not sure" or "Refused" responses
Data Interpretation IssuesQuestion Text: "Now thinking about your physical health, which includes physical illness and injury, for how many days during the past 30 days was your physical health NOT good?"
Beginning in 2011, BRFSS data includes both landline and cell phone respondent data along with a new weighting methodology called iterative proportional fitting, or raking. This methodology utilizes additional demographic information (such as education, race, and marital status) in the weighting procedure. Both of these methodology changes were implemented to account for an increased number of U.S. households without landline phones and an under-representation of certain demographic groups that were not well-represented in the sample. More details about these changes can be found at: [https://ibis.health.utah.gov/pdf/opha/resource/brfss/RakingImpact2011.pdf].
As with all surveys, some error results from non-response (e.g., refusal to participate in the survey or to answer specific questions), and measurement (e.g., social desirability or recall bias). Error was minimized by the use of strict calling protocols, good questionnaire design, standardization of interviewer behavior, interviewer training, and frequent, on-site interviewer monitoring and supervision.
Why Is This Important?General physical health status is the culmination of all the things that affect a person's health. A person may have had poor health because of an injury, an acute infection such as a cold or flu, or a chronic health problem. This measure can be used to identify health disparities, track population trends, plan public health programs, and measure progress toward several Healthy People 2030 goals.
Other ObjectivesOne of Utah's 42 Community Health Indicators.
Related to one of the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) Chronic Disease Indicators: "Recent physical health among adults ages 18+ years". (CSTE reports the mean number of physically unhealthy days during the previous 30 days.)
How Are We Doing?In 2020, an estimated 12.2% (crude rate) of Utah adults reported seven or more days in the past 30 days when their physical health was not good. Adults who were obese reported seven or more days of poor physical health at higher rates (16.2%) than their normal weight (11.1%) or overweight (9.9%) counterparts (age-adjusted rates). Current smokers also reported higher rates of poor physical health (20.2%) in the past 30 days than nonsmokers (11.7%) (age-adjusted rates).
How Do We Compare With the U.S.?Looking at age-adjusted rates for 2011-2020, Utah had lower percentages than the U.S. of adults who reported seven or more days when their physical health was not good in the past 30 days. At 12.4%, the 2020 Utah rate was lower at a rate that is statistically significant than the national rate of 13.2%. Age-adjusted rates were used to compare Utah and the U.S. because Utah has a younger population than the U.S., and younger adults are less likely to experience poor physical health than older adults. Age-adjusting controls for differences in this measure that are due to the difference in age distributions of the populations.
What Is Being Done?Until the last few years efforts to control chronic diseases have focused on preventing premature mortality. Reducing morbidity and improving disease self-management skills are now receiving considerably more attention from chronic disease prevention and control programs. The goal is to decrease the percentage of adults, including those who may have a chronic condition, who experience poor physical health days.