Determinants of rating of the seriousness of health issues facing Americans

Ami R. Moore, Mehmet Celebi, William Garner, Foster Amey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The United States leads the world in several chronic health conditions (CHCs). Yet, CHCs are preventable. Aim: This paper examines influences on rating of the seriousness of CHCs among American adults. Subjects and Methods: The study involved 1011 American adults aged 18 or older. Data came from Obesity in the United States: Public perceptions. We explored factors that are associated with knowledge of the seriousness of CHCs, via a multiple linear regression analysis. Results: Significant associations were found between the rating of the seriousness of CHCs and obesogenic environment, age, sex, race, and education. For instance, respondents living in obesogenic environments rated CHCs as less serious. Younger people rated CHCs as less serious compared to older people. Also, Blacks and Hispanics rated CHCs as serious health issues facing America compared to Whites. However, the joint association of education and race showed that Blacks who had at most a high school degree rated CHCs as less serious compared to Whites and all college graduates. Conclusion: The determinants of rating of the seriousness of CHCs facing America may be complex and need more studies. However, inadequate knowledge of frequently occurring health conditions may possibly contribute to high incidence of CHCs. It is therefore necessary that Americans know about the seriousness of CHCs facing the United States. This knowledge may also help American adults buy into health policies geared toward health disparities reduction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1283-1289
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Public Health (Germany)
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Chronic health conditions
  • Health issues
  • Knowledge
  • Rating
  • Seriousness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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