RANDS Webinar Today, Focuses on New Pandemic-era Data

August 26, 2020

Over one-third of Americans report having a health care provider that offers telemedicine options, either via phone or video appointments. That is just one of the new estimates CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) now has on a selected number of key issues during the pandemic, including loss of work due to illness with COVID-19 and reduced access to specific types of health care due to the pandemic.

The data come from the Research and Development Survey (RANDS), a platform designed for conducting survey question evaluation and statistical research.  RANDS estimates were generated using an experimental approach that differs from the survey design approaches generally used by NCHS, including possible biases from different response patterns and increased variability from lower sample sizes. Use of the RANDS platform allowed NCHS to produce more timely data than would have been possible using traditional data collection methods.

The first of two rounds of RANDS during COVID-19 data collection occurred between June 9, 2020 and July 6, 2020 and are presented on the web site at the following link:  https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/covid19/rands.htm.

Also, on Wednesday, August 26, 2020, NCHS will be hosting a webinar on RANDS from 2:00-3:00 ET.  To learn more or to register please visit the following link:  https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/covid19/rands/rands-covid19-webinar.htm.


QuickStats: Death Rates from Stroke Among Persons Aged ≥65 Years, by Sex and Age Group

August 21, 2020

In 2018, the death rate from stroke was 242.7 per 100,000 persons aged 65 years or older.

Persons aged 85 years or older had the highest death rate from stroke (984.3), followed by those aged 75–84 years (256.0) and those aged 65–74 years (76.8).

For both men and women, the death rates increased with age.  The death rate for women (261.6) was higher than that for men (219.0) for persons aged 65 years or older, but men had higher stroke death rates for the 65–74 and 75–84 age groups.

Women aged 85 years or older had higher death rates than did men in this age group.

Source: National Vital Statistics System mortality data. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/deaths.htm.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6933a5.htm


Fast Food Intake Among Children and Adolescents in the United States, 2015–2018

August 14, 2020

Questions for Cheryl Fryar, Health Statistician and Lead Author of “Fast Food Intake Among Children and Adolescents in the United States, 2015–2018.”

Q: Why does NCHS conduct studies on fast food consumption among children and adolescents?

CF: We focus on fast food for this report because fast food continues to play an important role in the American diet. Fast food has been associated with poor diet and increased risk of obesity. In a previous report, we described the percentage of calories consumed from fast food among children and adolescents during 201-2012. This report provides an update on the daily percentage of calories consumed from fast food by children and adolescents aged 2-19 years during 2015-2018 and trends since 2003.


Q: How did the data vary by age groups, sex and race?

CF: There were some demographic differences in the daily percentage of calories consumed from fast food. Adolescents aged 12–19 consumed a higher percentage of calories (16.7%) from fast food than younger children (11.4%) aged 2-11 years. Girls consumed a higher percentage than boys and non-Hispanic white adolescents consumed a lower percentage than the other race and Hispanic origin groups. This brief report did not examine confounders that may possibly explain demographic differences.


Q: Was there a specific finding in the data that surprised you from this report?

CF: While there really wasn’t anything in this report that I hadn’t expected to see or that was surprising to me, this report’s trends analysis is of interest. The daily percentage of calories from fast food in children and adolescents decreased from 14.1% in 2003–2004 to 10.6% in 2009–2010, and then increased to 14.4% in 2017-2018.


Q: How did you obtain this data for this report?

CF: The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is the source of the data.  Since 1999, NHANES has been conducted on a continuous basis, and visits approximately 15 counties each year of various population size.  The survey conducts at home health interviews and health examinations in mobile examination centers (MEC) with nearly 5000 people each year.   Information on nutrient intake was obtained from one 24-hour dietary recall interview administered in-person at the MEC.  Specifically, anyone who reported obtaining any food or beverage from “restaurant fast food/pizza” was someone who consumed fast food on a given day.  Dietary recalls cover intake for any given day, specifically the 24-hour period prior to the dietary recall interview (midnight to midnight).

For survey participants < 6 years of age a proxy was used (who was generally the person most knowledgeable about the child’s food intake). For children ages 6- 8, interviews were conducted with a proxy and with the child present to assist in reporting intake information. Interviews of children ages 9-11, were conducted with the child and the assistance of an adult familiar with the child’s intake. Adolescents 12 years or older answered for themselves.


Q: What is the take home message for this report?

CF: The take-home message for this report is that more than one-third (36.3%) of U.S. children and adolescents consume fast food on a given day. Overall, children and adolescents consume, on average, 13.8% of their daily calories from fast food.  And, on a given day, over 11% of children and adolescents consume more than 45% of their daily calories from fast food.

Diet and exercise play important roles in helping individuals achieve and maintain their health.  The USDA/HHS’ Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015 provides guidance in healthy food choices.  In addition, HHS’ 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans provides guidance for all ages in improving health through physical activity.


QuickStats: Age-Adjusted Death Rates for Males, Females and Both Sexes — United States, 2009–2018

August 7, 2020

During 2009–2018, the age-adjusted death rate in the United States generally declined, from 749.6 per 100,000 in 2009 to 723.6 in 2018.

The death rate among males declined from 2009 (890.9) to 2014 (855.1), increased in 2015 (863.2), and then remained relatively flat until 2018 (855.5).

Among females, the death rate declined steadily from 2009 (636.8) to 2018 (611.3). Throughout this period the death rate for males was higher than that for females.

Source: National Center for Health Statistics, National Vital Statistics System, mortality data. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/deaths.htm.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6931a5.htm


Health of American Indian and Alaska Native Adults, by Urbanization Level: United States, 2014–2018

August 6, 2020

Questions for Maria Villarroel, Health Statistician and Lead Author of “Health of American Indian and Alaska Native Adults, by Urbanization Level: United States, 2014–2018.”

Q: Why did you decide to do a report on health in American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) adults?

MV: There is limited information about the health of the American Indian and Alaska Native adults at the national level. Few national surveys are large enough to be able to provide reliable estimates about American Indian and Alaska Native adults. The National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) is one such survey that can inform on the health status and health conditions of civilian non-institutionalized adults residing in households across the country who identify as American Indian and Alaska Native.


Q: Can you summarize how the data varied by urbanization level?

MV: This report has two objectives.

The first objective was to compare the health of American Indian and Alaska Native adults by urbanization level.  The report findings indicate that the conditions examined did not follow a single pattern by urbanization level. The percentage of American Indian and Alaska Native adults with disabilities increased with higher urbanization level, multiple chronic conditions increased with lower urbanization level, diagnosed diabetes was highest in rural areas, diagnosed hypertension was highest for those in medium and small metropolitan areas and in rural areas, and those in fair or poor health status did not differ by urbanization level.

The second objective was to assess whether the percentage of American Indian and Alaska Native adults with selected conditions was similar to the percentage found, on average, among all U.S. adults. The report findings indicate that American Indian and Alaska Native adults were more likely to be in fair or poor health, have a disability, have multiple chronic conditions, and to have been diagnosed with hypertension and diabetes compared with all U.S. adults. This finding was consistent across most urbanization levels.


Q: Was there a specific finding in the data that surprised you from this report?

MV: Among American Indian and Alaska Native adults, the selected conditions examined did not follow a single pattern by urbanization level, and that across most urbanization levels, the percentage of American Indian and Alaska Native adults with these selected conditions was higher than found on average among U.S. adults.


Q: Is this the first time you have reported data on AIAN?  If not, do you have any trend data?

MV: Yes, this is the first time we have used NHIS data to examine selected health conditions among American Indian and Alaska Native adults in the US. We are not aware of a previous trend report and have not examined trends among this population ourselves.


Q: What is the take home message for this report?

MV: Among American Indian and Alaska Native adults, the conditions examined did not follow a single pattern by urbanization level, and across most urbanization levels, the percentage of American Indian and Alaska Native adults with these selected conditions was higher than found on average among U.S. adults.


QuickStats: Number of Natural Heat-Related Deaths by Sex and Age Group — National Vital Statistics System, United States, 2018

July 31, 2020

In 2018, natural heat exposure was associated with 726 deaths among males and 282 deaths among females.

Among males, the highest number of heat-related deaths was for those aged 55–64 years (150) and among females for those aged 65–74 years (58).

The lowest numbers were for males (four) and females (two) aged 5–14 years. Approximately 72% of heat-related deaths were among males.

Source: National Vital Statistics System. Multiple cause of death data, 1999–2018. https://wonder.cdc.gov/mcd.html.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6930a6.htm


Racial and Ethnic Differences in Mortality Rate of Infants Born to Teen Mothers: United States, 2017–2018

July 31, 2020

Questions for Ashley Woodall, Health Statistician and Lead Author of “Racial and Ethnic Differences in Mortality Rate of Infants Born to Teen Mothers: United States, 2017–2018.”

Q: Why did you decide to focus on teenagers for this report?

AW: There has not been much research on infant mortality using national data that focuses on specific maternal age groups. Teenagers are an age group of particular interest because infants born to teenagers have higher infant mortality rates compared with infants born to women in older age groups. Consequently, we wanted to explore the recent patterns in infant mortality for teenagers in the United States.


Q: Can you summarize some of the findings?

AW: In 2017–2018, infants born to teenagers aged 15–19 had the highest rate of mortality (8.77 deaths per 1,000 live births) compared with infants born to women aged 20 and over. Among teenagers, infants of non-Hispanic black females had the highest infant mortality rate (12.54) compared with non-Hispanic white (8.43) and Hispanic (6.47) females. Among the five leading causes of infant death, the largest racial and ethnic difference in mortality rates was found for preterm- and low-birthweight-related causes, where rates were two to three times higher for infants of non-Hispanic black teenagers (284.31 per 100,000 live births) than infants of non-Hispanic white (119.18) and Hispanic (94.44) teenagers.


Q: Was there a specific finding in the data that surprised you from this report?

AW: We were surprised by the large racial and ethnic disparity in deaths for preterm- and low-birthweight-related causes. This finding suggests that preterm birth and low birthweight are significant contributing factors for death among infants born to non-Hispanic black teenagers.


Q: Can you explain the difference between total infant, neonatal, and postneonatal mortality rates?

AW: Infant mortality is the death of a baby before his or her first birthday. It is calculated by dividing the number of infant deaths during a calendar year by the number of live births reported in the same year. It is expressed as the number of infant deaths per 1,000 live births. Neonatal mortality rate is the death of a baby during the first 27 days after birth, per 1,000 live births. Postneonatal mortality rate is the death of a baby between 28 days to under 1 year after birth, per 1,000 live births.


Q: What is the take home message for this report?

AW: The different mortality patterns seen among infants born to teenage mothers illustrate the racial and ethnic disparities in infant mortality and suggest that preterm birth and low birthweight are major public health concerns for infants born to non-Hispanic black teenagers.


QuickStats: Percentage of Adults Aged 50–75 Years Who Received Colorectal Cancer Screening by Poverty Status and Year — National Health Interview Survey, United States, 2010 and 2018

July 24, 2020

The percentage of adults aged 50–75 years who received colorectal cancer tests or procedures increased from 58.7% in 2010 to 65.5% in 2018.

The percentage increased from 2010 to 2018 in all income groups: from 37.9% to 53.1% among poor, 47.9% to 56.7% among near poor, and 63.6% to 68.7% among not poor adults.

In both 2010 and 2018, the percentage of adults who received colorectal cancer screening was lowest among poor and highest among not poor adults.

Source: National Health Interview Survey, 2010 and 2018. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nhis.htm.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6929a6.htm


Health of Former Cigarette Smokers Aged 65 and Over: United States, 2018

July 22, 2020

New NCHS report describes select measures of health among former cigarette smokers aged 65 and over.

Click to access nhsr145-508.pdf


QuickStats: Percentage of Adults Who Volunteered or Worked in a Hospital, Medical Clinic, Doctor’s Office, Dentist’s Office, Nursing Home, or Some Other Health Care Facility by Sex, Race, and Hispanic Origin — National Health Interview Survey, United States, 2016–2018

July 17, 2020

During 2016–2018, women aged 18 years or older were more likely to volunteer or work in a hospital, medical clinic, doctor’s office, dentist’s office, nursing home, or some other health care facility (health care settings) than were men (12.3% compared with 5.2%).

Non-Hispanic black (15.8%), Asian (12.8%), and white women (12.3%) were more likely to volunteer or work in health care settings than were Hispanic women (9.6%).

Non-Hispanic Asian men (7.6%) were more likely to volunteer or work in health care settings than were black (6.0%), white (5.3%), and Hispanic men (3.8%).

Source: National Health Interview Survey, 2016–2018 data. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nhis.htm.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6928a7.htm