Health Promotion in Singapore : A need to focus on sociocultural and socioeconomic differences

Ms Alison Prescott, Chee Yeong MsChng, Dr Chew Ling


Background: In the last 50 years, Singapore's achievement has been to use multiculturalism to foster social cohesion and build a new nation. With a population of 75% Chinese, 13% Malays, 9% Indians and 3% other nationalities, this heterogeneous population brought with them different cultures and goals.  The nation has seen through diverse health promoting interventions with mixed success. Purpose: This paper presents the health behavior trends focusing on sociocultural and socioeconomic differences in the population using data from the on-going Health Behavior Surveillance of Singapore (HBSS).  Highest educational qualification is used as a proxy for socioeconomic status.

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