Our questionnaires cover over 40 different health topics and areas. Below are summaries of the types of variables and topics addressed.
For specific variables and annotated questionnaire documents, visit our Codebooks.
- Health and Health History
- Mental Health
- Health-related Behaviors
- Physical and Built Environment
- Social and Socioeconomic Determinants of Health
Demographics data include but are not limited to:
- gender and sexual identity
- racial and ethnic ancestry
- individual and household reported income
- including number of individuals in the household
Poverty levels are determined using U.S. Department of Health and Human Services poverty guidelines.
See the Social and Economic Determinants section for the Economic Hardship index.
Health questions include respondent’s diagnosed health conditions, including chronic conditions and their medical treatment. Health history questions capture information on family history of certain conditions such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, asthma, heart attack and stroke. We combine information from multiple questions or reformat responses in order to derive details for certain conditions, which are listed below.
Variables on the diagnosis, awareness (undiagnosed asthma), treatment and control of asthma.
The cardiovascular health index (2008-13, modified from Folsom AR et al 2011, see codebook) is based on meeting the American Heart Association’s recommendation for seven components of a healthy lifestyle, which include:
- smoking status
- body mass index
- physical activity
- total cholesterol
- blood pressure
- hemoglobin A1c
Chronic health conditions
A derived variable depicts a history of one or more of the following health conditions:
- coronary heart disease (angina or myocardial infarction)
- chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
- chronic bronchitis
The first part of the cognitive instrument includes a common verbal category fluency test in which respondents are asked to name as many different animals as they can in one minute. Following this exercise, the Mini-Cog test is administered, a three-minute screening instrument for cognitive impairment.
The Mini-Cog uses a three-item recall test for memory and a simply scored clock-drawing test. The latter serves as an “informative distractor,” helping to clarify scores when the memory recall score is intermediate. In 2008-13, all adults received cognitive testing. From 2014-present, adults 60 and older were asked to complete testing.
Variables on the diagnosis, awareness (undiagnosed diabetes), treatment, and control of diabetes.
General health status
The SF-12v2 Health Survey Standard Version from Quality Metric Health Outcomes instrument captures an individual’s perceived health status, including the physical component summary and mental component summary scores.
Variables on the diagnosis, awareness (undiagnosed hypertension), treatment, and control of hypertension.
Information on female reproductive health includes questions on hormone use, pregnancy and maternity. It also includes questions about common screening tests that have been recommended for women at different ages by a variety of health organizations.
Questions on individuals’ sleep patterns, sleep duration, sleep quality and disorders related to sleep.
The first part of the cognitive instrument includes a common verbal category fluency test in which respondents are asked to name as many different animals as they can in one minute. Following this exercise, the Mini-Cog test is administered, a 3-minute screening instrument for cognitive impairment.
The Mini-Cog uses a three-item recall test for memory and a simply scored clock-drawing test. The latter serves as an “informative distractor,” helping to clarify scores when the memory recall score is intermediate. From 2008-13, all adults received cognitive testing. From 2014-present, adults 60 and older were asked to complete testing.
The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-8) eight-item instrument provides a diagnostic and severity measure of depression. The PHQ-8 (administered from 2008-13) is based on DSM-IV diagnostic criteria for depression. The PHQ-2 screener for depression (2014-present) uses the first two items of the PHQ-8, (frequency of depressed mood and anhedonia over the past two weeks).
Post-traumatic stress disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) Checklist – Civilian Version for DSM-IV (PCL-C, administered 2008-2012) is a standardized self-report rating scale comprised of 17 items that correspond to the key symptoms of PTSD, applied generally to any traumatic event. In 2014 to present, we administered the six-item abbreviated PTSD Checklist, a shortened version of the PCL-C (including items 1, 4, 7, 10, 14, and 15), as well as item 13 from the PCL-C.
This instrument measures how often people have feelings and behaviors that might indicate stress, anxiety, and depression. The first part of the questionnaire is based on the Global Perceived Stress Scale, an 8-item self-report measure of perceived chronic stress, originally created for use in the Jackson Heart Study. The 21-item Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS) was administered in 2008-2013 and the 7-item shortened version of the DASS in 2014-present.
The insurance, access, and utilization instrument includes questions on respondents’ health insurance status as well as their access to and use of the health care system.
Prescription medications used in the last 30 days as well as select over the counter medications are captured.
Geography data includes U.S. Census geography at the block group level or higher, as well as RUCA, Six State, and Census urban rural classifications for each respondent’s residence. Data linkages between external data and SHOW data by census block group can be completed in the SHOW offices.
A housing characteristics questionnaire provides specific information relating to the physical home environment.
The Characteristics of your Neighborhood questionnaire provides specific information on walking distances to destinations and subjective evaluations of the neighborhood. Destinations include park, trail, pool, fitness center, grocery store, library, school, restaurants and fast food, pharmacy, salon, church, and others.
Walk Score, Bike Score, and Transit Score results were calculated by and obtained from the Walk Score website based on respondent addresses. This codebook includes scores for adults and minors.
Wisconsin Assessment of the Social and Built Environment (WASABE) (2009-10)
For select 2009 and 2010 households, an objective audit of the 400-meter street network buffer surrounding SHOW households was completed to assess the social and built environment.