UW Health Research Project visits Merrill, townships in Aug.

The Survey of the Health of Wisconsin (SHOW), is the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health’s new statewide research project. Every year, SHOW meets with Wisconsin residents from all over the state to measure their health. This August, the survey teams will visit households in the city of Merrill and the towns of Pine River and Scott.

SHOW surveyors will knock on the doors of randomly selected households to complete a multi-step in-person health survey. SHOW combines personal interviews, laboratory tests, physical measurements, and community environmental measurements to gather important information on our health. The information that SHOW compiles will be made available to researchers who are interested in Wisconsin’s public health issues.

In order for SHOW’s health measurements to be truly representative of Wisconsin’s population, the survey randomly selects households from throughout the state. Roughly 1,200 households from neighborhoods around Wisconsin are invited to participate each year.

“SHOW aims to present a picture of the health of people in Wisconsin,” said Dr. F. Javier Nieto of the University of Wisconsin’s School of Medicine and Public Health and Director of SHOW. “Our vision is that the information SHOW collects through the years will play an important role in monitoring the health of Wisconsin people, and in guiding community and statewide health services.”

“SHOW will provide us with current health and prospective clinical information never before available in Wisconsin,” said Dr. Henry Anderson, Chief Medical Officer for the state Bureau of Environmental and Occupational Health in the Division of Public Health. “The results of this survey and clinical examinations will measure the current health status of all Wisconsin residents. This survey will make us better equipped to develop initiatives that will help make Wisconsin healthier than ever.”

The SHOW research project is modeled after the CDC’s National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), which has provided key health information about the nation’s health for over 40 years. With the launch of SHOW, Wisconsin will be the first state to monitor the health of its residents with a survey of this magnitude. Using NHANES as a guide, SHOW is specially designed for the Wisconsin population by including regionally important health measures, such as local environment assessments and Great Lakes fish consumption.

SHOW is funded by the National Institutes of Health’s Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and by the University of Wisconsin’s Partnership for a Healthy Future, which represents a far-reaching commitment by UW School of Medicine and Public Health to greatly improve the health of people in Wisconsin for years to come.

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