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The Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) monitors health risks and behaviors among Indiana youth in grades 9 through 12 in six categories: nutrition and weight, physical activity, tobacco use, alcohol and other drug use, violence and injuries, and sexual behavior. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) these health risks and behaviors are related to the leading causes of death and illness among both youth and adults.
In the spring of 2007, the Indiana State Department of Health administered the Youth Risk Behavior Survey in high schools across the state. Forty-four high schools and 2,331 students participated. The Youth Risk Behavior Survey is a national survey effort led by the CDC to monitor students’ health risks and behaviors.
This is the second year that weighted data has been available for Indiana, which means that the response rates for the survey were high enough to allow the data collected to be generalized for all Indiana high school students. Weighted data is available for 2003, 2005 and 2007 allowing the state to have trend data.
The YRBS provides comparable local, state, and national data, as well as comparable data among subpopulations of youth. Health officials can use the data to monitor progress towards achieving the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Healthy People 2010 objectives, as well as to guide health programs. Indiana schools, local health departments, and other youth-serving organizations can also use this data to show the need for services when applying for grants.