The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has released the 2017 National Survey of Children’s Health data from nearly 21,000 households across the U.S. This voluntary survey, funded and directed by HRSA’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau, provides annual national- and state-level estimates of key measures of child health and well-being. Anyone can access the data free of charge.
“The HRSA National Survey of Children’s Health is an innovative, unique tool providing information on the health status and health service needs of children throughout our nation,” said HRSA Administrator George Sigounas, MS, Ph.D. “These data empower people at the state and federal levels to develop policies and programs informed by recent, quality data.”
The 2016 and 2017 data can be combined to provide a nationally-representative sample of over 70,000 children. Key findings include:
- In 2016-2017, 13.8 million children (or 18.8 percent of children) ages 0-17 years in the United States were reported to have a special health care need.
- Among children ages 3-17 who were reported as needing mental health services in the past 12 months, 80 percent received these services in 2016-2017.
- In 2016-2017, 76 percent of infants up to one year old were placed to sleep on their backs most of the time. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends infants always be placed to sleep on their backs.
“The HRSA National Survey of Children’s Health gives the most current state-by-state snapshot of data on some of the most consequential health issues affecting children today,” said Laura Kavanagh, Acting Associate Administrator of HRSA’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau. “What we learn from the Survey enables HRSA and its partners to strengthen and support families.”
Since it began in 2003, the HRSA National Survey of Children’s Health has informed HRSA’s Maternal and Child Health Services Title V Block Grant national performance and outcome measures, as well as HHS’s Healthy People objectives. HRSA works with the U.S. Census Bureau to conduct the survey, oversee sampling, and produce a final data set for public use. For more information about the HRSA National Survey of Children’s Health, visit https://mchb.hrsa.gov/data/national-surveys.