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PCPA and DOH Bring Trauma Research to BRFSS
October 20, 2009

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) is a state-based system that gathers information through telephone surveys conducted by the health department in each state. It is the world’s largest continuously conducted telephone health surveillance system, conducting more than 350,000 interviews per year. States collect data through monthly telephone interviews with adults to gather information about a wide range of behaviors that affect health. The primary focus has been on behaviors and conditions that are linked with the leading causes of death—heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, and injury—and other important health issues.

PCPA has had a sustained focus on trauma informed care and the physical/behavioral health relationship. During the past several months the association has worked with the Pennsylvania Department of Health Violence and Injury Prevention Program to have the CDC approve the addition of the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study questions to the Pennsylvania BRFSS. As a result, beginning in 2010 the Pennsylvania BRFSS will include the ACE questions. The ACE Study is one of the largest investigations ever conducted on the links between childhood maltreatment and later-life health and well-being. ACE Study findings suggest that these experiences are major risk factors for the leading causes of illness and death as well as poor quality of life in the United States.

Information on the BRFSS can be found at www.cdc.gov/NCCDPHP/publications/aag/brfss.htm.
Information about the ACE Study can be at www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/ace/index.htm.  

For more information or questions contact Connell O’Brien.

 

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