Report on the health behaviour of school-aged children by WHO

Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC), a WHO collaborative cross-national study, involves a wide network of researchers from all participating countries and regions. The Health Behaviour of School-aged Children (HBSC) study provides key insights into the health-related behaviours of young
people. Its unique methodology has facilitated engagement with hundreds of thousands of young people in many parts of the world since its inception in 1983, building a data base over time that describes patterns and issues relevant to their health and well-being.

HBSC focuses on a wide range of health, education, social and family measures that affect young people’s health and well-being. Previous reports from the study have highlighted gender, age, geographic and family affluence factors. This fifth international report from HBSC focuses on social determinants of health and provides a full description of the health and well-being of young people growing up in different countries across Europe and North America through data collected from the 2009/2010 survey.
The importance of social determinants to young people’s health, well-being and development is clear. Theirs is a world of great opportunity in relation to health, education, occupation, social engagement, discovery and fulfilment. But it is also a world laden with risks that can affect their ability to achieve full health both now and in the future, reduce their opportunities for education and occupation, and lead to isolation, frustrated ambition and disappointment.
This HBSC report is a crucial resource in deepening the understanding of social determinants that are known to affect young people’s health and well-being. Its broad areas of focus – social context, health outcomes, health behaviours and risk behaviours – encapsulate key factors that influence young people’s health and well-being, opportunities and life chances. The report provides strong evidence and data that will support countries in formulating their own policies and programmes to meet the challenges that lie ahead.
The worldwide economic downturn poses risks to systems everywhere, but HBSC results enable countries to focus their resources on the most effective interventions. Evidence is emerging on how HBSC data are influencing policy within countries; this is a very encouraging development that we hope to see continuing into the future, with appropriate support provided to ensure HBSC can progress with its vital work.

Complete pdf here: http://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/163857/Social-determinants-of-health-and-well-being-among-young-people.pdf

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