Routine health care plays a central role in health promotion and disease prevention for children and in reducing health disparities. The purpose of this study is to examine the prevalence of routine physical examination among racially and ethnically diverse adolescents at 5 different time points. The study used data from the Minnesota Student Survey. Measures include frequency of physical examination by race/ethnicity, poverty status, and family structure. The analytic sample included 351 510 adolescents (1998, n = 67 239; 2001, n = 69 177; 2004, n = 71 084; 2007, n = 72 312; and 2010, n = 71 698). There were significant differences by racial/ethnic group at each time point. For example, in 2010, never having a physical examination was reported by 9.2% American Indian, 8.7% Asian American/Pacific Islander, 7.0% Hispanic/Latino, 4.3% Black/African American, 3.7% mixed race, and 2.6% of White respondents (P <.001). Patterns of association emerged when the measure of routine physical examination was stratified by poverty and family structure.
- adolescent health
- health disparities
- physical examination
- preventive care
- racial and ethnic disparities