The Health and Well-Being of Children in Rural Areas: A Portrait of the Nation 2005
Home The Child The Child's Family The Child and Family's Neighborhood Order
Overall Child Health Status  |  Children with Moderate or Severe Health Conditions
Breastfeeding  |  Children with Moderate or Severe Socio-Emotional Difficulties  |  Impact of Socio-Emotional Difficulties
Overweight  |  Injury  |  Parents' Concerns  |  Current Health Insurance  |  Coverage Consistency  |  Preventive Health Care Visits
Preventive Dental Visits  |  Medical Home  |  Staying Home Alone  |  Repeating a Grade  |  Regular Physical Activity
photo of baby's face
The Child
While all children need regular preventive care and care when they are sick, and all parents share concerns for their children’s health and safety, the health issues faced by children in rural areas may differ from those of urban children. This section presents information on children’s health status, their health care, and their activities in and outside of school. Taken together, these measures present a snapshot of children’s health and well-being that reflects a wide range of aspects of their lives.

Children’s health status was measured through parents’ reports of their children’s overall health status as well as whether they had moderate or severe health or socio-emotional problems. In addition, parents were asked about their children’s injuries and their concerns about their children’s development and behavior.

Children’s access to health care and parents’ satisfaction with the health care their children receive were measured through questions about children’s health insurance coverage and their use of preventive medical and dental services. Several survey questions were also combined to assess whether children had a “medical home,” a source of primary care that is accessible, family-centered, continuous, comprehensive, coordinated, compassionate, and culturally effective.1

Children’s participation in activities in school and in the community represents another important aspect of their well-being. The survey addressed whether school-aged children had ever repeated a grade and whether they were ever left home alone. In addition, parents were asked about their children’s participation in physical activities on a regular basis.

1 American Academy of Pediatrics, Medical Home Initiatives for Children with Special Needs Project Advisory Committee. The medical home. Pediatrics 2002;110(1):184-86.

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This chartbook is based on data from the National Survey of Children's Health. Suggested citation: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau. The National Survey of Children's Health 2003. Rockville, Maryland: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2005.