Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


Public Health

First Advisor

Russ Toal - Committee Chair

Second Advisor

Sheryl Strasser - Committee Member


Behavior risk factors include health risk factors that increase a person's chances of developing a disease, such as having a high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, tobacco smoke, physical inactivity, obesity or overweight, diabetes, poor nutrition, lack of sex education and car safety. They can be classified as: Background risk factors, such as age, sex, level of education and genetic compositions; Behavioral risk factors, such as smoking, unhealthy diet and physical inactivity; and Intermediate risk factors, such a serum cholesterol levels, diabetes, hypertension and obesity/overweight. This study describes a comparison and assessment of Behavior Risk Factor Surveillance Systems for the U.S., Canada, and Italy. The aim of this project is to assess and analyze the behavior surveillance systems of U.S., Canada and Italy, compare their strengths and weaknesses and provide recommendations that can be used as a guide for the design of new BRFS systems or the assessment of existing systems. The purpose of the assessment is to identify ways of improving the respective systems, and also to compare public health BRFS systems in the three different countries. The attributes used in the evaluation of the systems include simplicity, flexibility, data quality, acceptability, sensitivity, predictive value positive, representativeness, timeliness, and stability. The criteria and standards are based on the CDC Guidelines for Evaluating Surveillance Systems published on 1988 and updated on 2001.

Included in

Public Health Commons