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Two views of self-rated general health status

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  • Bailis, Daniel S.
  • Segall, Alexander
  • Chipperfield, Judith G.

Abstract

Global self-evaluations of health have proven to be sensitive predictors of morbidity and mortality. Yet researchers have only a limited understanding of how these self-evaluations are reached. This research compares two interpretations of self-rated health, as reflecting either a spontaneous assessment of one's health status and related practices, or an aspect of one's enduring self-concept. Using longitudinal data from successive waves of the National Population Health Survey in Canada (Statistics Canada, 1994-95, 1996-97, NPHS public use microdata documentation. Ottawa, Ontario: Statistics Canada; n=7505), our analysis tests a model of change in self-rated health as predicted by respondents' baseline physical and mental health symptoms, social support, leisure physical activity, smoking, body mass index, and 2-yr changes in these characteristics. As in past research, self-rated health was sensitive to improvement or decline in these predictors. Much of the explained variance, however, was unique to respondents' self-rated health 2Â yr earlier. Moreover, the effect of several predictors on respondents' self-rated health varied according to whether respondents intended to improve specific health-related behaviours in the future. These findings suggest that self-rated health is not only a spontaneous assessment of one's health status and related practices; like a self-concept, self-rated health may be regulated by efforts to achieve one's relatively important health-related goals.

Suggested Citation

  • Bailis, Daniel S. & Segall, Alexander & Chipperfield, Judith G., 2003. "Two views of self-rated general health status," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 203-217, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:56:y:2003:i:2:p:203-217
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Roth, David L. & Skarupski, Kimberly A. & Crews, Deidra C. & Howard, Virginia J. & Locher, Julie L., 2016. "Distinct age and self-rated health crossover mortality effects for African Americans: Evidence from a national cohort study," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, pages 12-20.
    2. Cheung, Tracy & Junghans, Astrid & Dijsterhuis, Garmt & Kroese, Floor & Johansson, Petter & Hall, Lars & De Ridder, Denise, 2015. "C(l)ue Me In - Enhancing Consumers' Attention to Ingredient List Information," 143rd Joint EAAE/AAEA Seminar, March 25-27, 2015, Naples, Italy 202723, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Layes, Audrey & Asada, Yukiko & Kephart, George, 2012. "Whiners and deniers – What does self-rated health measure?," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, pages 1-9.
    4. Hurtado, David & Kawachi, Ichiro & Sudarsky, John, 2011. "Social capital and self-rated health in Colombia: The good, the bad and the ugly," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 72(4), pages 584-590, February.
    5. Lori J. Curtis, 2007. "Health Status of On and Off-reserve Aboriginal Peoples: Analysis of the Aboriginal Peoples Survey," Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population Research Papers 191, McMaster University.
    6. repec:ipf:psejou:v:41:y:2017:i:1:p:85-108 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Perruccio, Anthony V. & Badley, Elizabeth M. & Hogg-Johnson, Sheilah & Davis, Aileen M., 2010. "Characterizing self-rated health during a period of changing health status," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 71(9), pages 1636-1643, November.
    8. Robert Belli & Sangeeta Agrawal & Ipek Bilgen, 2012. "Health status and disability comparisons between CATI calendar and conventional questionnaire instruments," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 46(3), pages 813-828, April.
    9. Vie, Tina Løkke & Hufthammer, Karl Ove & Holmen, Turid Lingaas & Meland, Eivind & Breidablik, Hans Johan, 2014. "Is self-rated health a stable and predictive factor for allostatic load in early adulthood? Findings from the Nord Trøndelag Health Study (HUNT)," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, pages 1-9.
    10. Nelson, Connie Holmes & Park, Jungwee, 2006. "The nature and correlates of unmet health care needs in Ontario, Canada," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 62(9), pages 2291-2300, May.
    11. Xiangfei Meng & Carl D’Arcy, 2016. "Determinants of Self-Rated Health Among Canadian Seniors Over Time: A Longitudinal Population-Based Study," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 126(3), pages 1343-1353, April.
    12. McBride, Colleen M. & Puleo, Elaine & Pollak, Kathryn I. & Clipp, Elizabeth C. & Woolford, Sam & Emmons, Karen M., 2008. "Understanding the role of cancer worry in creating a "teachable moment" for multiple risk factor reduction," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 66(3), pages 790-800, February.
    13. Rees, Philip Howell & Wohland, Pia N. & Norman, Paul D., 2009. "The estimation of mortality for ethnic groups at local scale within the United Kingdom," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 69(11), pages 1592-1607, December.
    14. Bakshi, Sanjeev & Pathak, Prasanta, 2010. "What makes them feel healthier? the correlates of self-perceived health among older adults in India," MPRA Paper 40541, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    15. Holly Heard & Bridget Gorman & Carolyn Kapinus, 2008. "Family Structure and Self-Rated Health in Adolescence and Young Adulthood," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 27(6), pages 773-797, December.
    16. Sharon Merkin & Hadar Arditi-Babchuk & Tamy Shohat, 2015. "Neighborhood socioeconomic status and self-rated health in Israel: the Israel National Health Interview Survey," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), pages 651-658.
    17. Gunasekara, Fiona Imlach & Carter, Kristie & Blakely, Tony, 2012. "Comparing self-rated health and self-assessed change in health in a longitudinal survey: Which is more valid?," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, pages 1117-1124.
    18. Alexandra K. Heaney & Sandra J. Winter, 2016. "Climate-driven migration: an exploratory case study of Maasai health perceptions and help-seeking behaviors," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), pages 641-649.
    19. Wedow, Robbee & Briley, Daniel A. & Short, Susan E. & Boardman, Jason D., 2016. "Gender and genetic contributions to weight identity among adolescents and young adults in the U.S," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, pages 99-107.
    20. Brenes-Camacho, Gilbert, 2011. "Favourable changes in economic well-being and self-rated health among the elderly," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 72(8), pages 1228-1235, April.
    21. Wim Peersman & Dirk Cambier & Jan Maeseneer & Sara Willems, 2012. "Gender, educational and age differences in meanings that underlie global self-rated health," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), pages 513-523.
    22. Michael Goodman & Sarah Seidel & Reegan Kaberia & Philip Keiser, 2015. "How can we improve healthcare access and general self-rated health among orphans and vulnerable children? Findings from a Kenyan cross-sectional study," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), pages 589-597.
    23. Oksanen, Tuula & Kouvonen, Anne & Kivimäki, Mika & Pentti, Jaana & Virtanen, Marianna & Linna, Anne & Vahtera, Jussi, 2008. "Social capital at work as a predictor of employee health: Multilevel evidence from work units in Finland," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 66(3), pages 637-649, February.
    24. Koopmans, Gerrit T. & Lamers, Leida M., 2007. "Gender and health care utilization: The role of mental distress and help-seeking propensity," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 64(6), pages 1216-1230, March.

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