Self-rated health, associated factors and diseases: a community-based cross-sectional study of Singaporean adults aged 40 years and above

Ann Acad Med Singap. 2009 Jul;38(7):606-7.


Introduction: Subjective indicators of health like self-rated health (SRH) have been shown to be a predictor of mortality and morbidity. We determined the prevalence of poor SRH in Singapore and its association with various lifestyle and socioeconomic factors and disease states.

Materials and methods: Cross-sectional survey by interviewer-administered questionnaire of participants aged 40 years and above. SRH was assessed from a standard question and categorised into poor, fair, good or excellent. Lifestyle factors, socioeconomic factors and presence of disease states were also assessed.

Results: Out of 409 participants, 27.6% rated their health as poor or fair, 53.1% as good and 19.3% as excellent. Smaller housing-type (PRR: 1.64, 95% CI: 1.10- 2.44) and lack of exercise (PRR: 1.54, 95% CI: 1.06-2.22) were found to be associated with poor SRH. Presence of chronic diseases such as coronary artery disease (PRR: 1.89, 95% CI: 1.13-3.17), diabetes mellitus (PRR: 1.85, 95% CI: 1.18-2.91), history of cancer (PRR: 2.15, 95% CI: 1.05-4.41) and depression (PRR: 1.73, 95% CI: 1.13-2.65) were associated with poor SRH.

Conclusion: Prevalence and factors associated with poor SRH in Singapore was comparable to other developed countries. SRH is an important subjective outcome of health and has the potential for wider use in clinical practice in Singapore.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Chronic Disease / epidemiology*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Health Status Indicators*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Singapore / epidemiology
  • Socioeconomic Factors