National Adolescent School-based Health Survey (PeNSE)



This supplement of Ciência & Saúde Coletiva presents the results of the 1st National Adolescent School-based Health Survey (PeNSE), conducted by means of a partnership between the Ministry of Health and the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) in 2009. The study investigated different risk and protection factors of the ninth grade scholar health in 26 Brazilian capitals and the Federal District.

PeNSE is justified by the fact that adolescence is a stage of life marked by a complex growing and biopsychosocial development. This stage is an important moment to the adoption of new practices and behaviors, autonomy gain, exhibition to different situations and present and future risks to health. Exposure to behavioral risk factors such as smoking, alcohol consumption, unhealthy diet, sedentary lifestyle, violent situations, often starts in adolescence. These factors are associated with the development of most non-communicable diseases and injuries (DANT), including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, and situations of violence and accidents as leading causes of death in adult life in Brazil and the world.

PeNSE is part of the Non-communicable Diseases and Injuries Surveillance (DANT), which was structured in 2003 at the Health Surveillance Secretariat aiming to monitor trends in morbidity and mortality and risk factors for these diseases, thereby generating evidence to guide the development and planning of prevention and health promotion actions. The monitoring of DANT assumes the systematic flow of secondary and primary data. The main sources of data are information systems in hospital admissions and mortality as well as health surveys and special journals.

Aiming to provide the country information on these diseases and their factors the following national surveys were carried out: the Risk Factors of DANT Survey (2003) conducted in partnership between SVS and the National Cancer Institute (INCA) in 18 Brazilian capitals; the National Survey on Risk Factors and Protection of Non-Communicable Diseases by means of telephone interviews (Vigitel) conducted annually from 2006 to 2009; the Surveillance System for Violence and Accidents (Viva) in 2006, 2007 and 2009; the National Household Sample Survey (PNAD 2008) and finally the National School-based Health Survey (PeNSE). Thus, the Brazilian Unified Health System provides regular high quality information for the monitoring the trend of risk and protection factors of DANT.

The support of Abrasco, Ciência & Saúde Coletiva and its editors makes possible this initiative of gathering several articles prepared by the Health Surveillance Secretariat (SVS-MS), IBGE and other education and research institutions of the country, bringing a new perspective on the health of the Brazilian adolescents and analyzing relevant themes to its management.

The dissemination of these results will exponentially increase the knowledge of the prevalence of risk and protective factors in this age group, as well as to follow the prevalent trends over time and generate evidence to guide and evaluate actions focused in the health of students, besides contributing to that the results of PeNSE may support the development of public policies for prevention and health promotion, especially in the Health in School Program (PSE). Also it will collaborate to PeNSE be included as a permanent instrument of the Brazilian State management in conformation of policies to promote health for adolescents.



Gerson Penna
Health Surveillance Secretary

ABRASCO - Associação Brasileira de Saúde Coletiva Rio de Janeiro - RJ - Brazil
E-mail: revscol@fiocruz.br