For 30 years HBSC has been a pioneer cross-national study gaining insight into young people's well-being, health behaviours and their social context. This research collaboration with the WHO Regional Office for Europe is conducted every four years in 43 countries and regions across Europe and North America. With adolescents making about one sixth of the world's population, HBSC uses its findings to inform policy and practice to improve the lives of millions of young people. [more]
The extent to which different pathways contribute to adolescent health inequalities is not well understood, especially from a cross-national perspective. This new study is among the first to systematically examine the relative contribution of psychosocial and behavioural factors in the explanation of inequalities between adolescents (from different socio-economic statuses) across 28 European and North American countries.
The authors used 2005/06 data from the HBSC international survey. Multilevel regression models were conducted to analyse the direct and indirect contribution of psychosocial and behavioural factors on the self-reported health of 11 – 15-year olds.
Socioeconomic inequalities in adolescent self-rated health were found in all countries. Psychosocial and behavioural factors explained approximately 50-60% of health inequalities by family affluence - with relationship to father, academic achievement, physical activity and fruit and vegetable consumption found to be the most important factors.
Rather than focussing purely on behavioural change, these findings indicate that policies intending to address health inequalities should take a multi-pathway approach in order to improve success.
[03-09-2014 to 31-12-2014]