The importance of 33 aspects of health was evaluated by 677 people as part of a postal random population survey conducted in Adelaide, South Australia. Principal factors analysis suggested that the respondents' evaluations could be represented along four dimensions to do with: the avoidance of illness; feeling healthy; healthy lifestyle; and disease prevention activities. Generally, women, persons in older age groups, and persons in lower social status and education groups evaluated health more highly than others. These and other findings suggest that health evaluations depend upon illness experience and social roles. These findings have implications for health education, mass communication and medical practice.
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