CDC Releases 2013 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) Data

Helping Communities Prioritize and Plan Health Programs

BRFSS is the nation's premier system of health-related telephone surveys that collect state data about U.S. residents regarding their health-related risk behaviors, chronic health conditions, and use of preventive services. This information helps communities prioritize and plan health programs more effectively. Health officials also use BRFSS as a flexible and timely tool for monitoring and responding to public health emergencies, such as the seasonal influenza vaccine shortage of 2004–2005 and the effects of hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma in 2005. BRFSS is even being used to monitor data for important emerging health issues such as mental illness and to provide surveillance data on depression, anxiety, and other mental health topics.
 
BRFSS collects data in all 50 states as well as the District of Columbia and three U.S. territories. BRFSS completes more than 400,000 adult interviews each year since 1984, making it the largest continuously conducted health survey system in the world. For more information on BRFSS, see this fact sheet.
 
BRFSS collects state data about U.S. residents regarding their health-related risk behaviors and events, chronic health conditions, and use of preventive services. BRFSS also collects data on important emerging health issues such as vaccine shortage and influenza-like illness. For example, since September 2009, federal, state, and local health agencies have used BRFSS to monitor the prevalence rates of influenza-like illness to help with pandemic planning. Interviewers administer the annual BRFSS surveys continuously through the year.
 
BRFSS uses mail, land lines, and cell phones to gather information. It is always assessing the changing public health needs and expanding as needed to meet those needs, such as beginning to incorporate Web-based surveys. You can download state-based data at this link BRFSS Annual Survey Data.