Population Characteristics


Certain factors, like your sex, age, or income can influence your health, your risk for certain diseases, and your risk for being seriously affected by public health emergencies. The same is true for populations. Population characteristic commonly include age, gender, race, and ethnicity.

Population characteristics help predict the possible health outcomes and risk for certain diseases. For example, older populations are more at risk for strokes and heart attacks. They also show how diseases can develop and change over time and from one place to another.

Although some research shows that population characteristics and the environment are related, it is difficult to measure the relationship. Some research shows that these factors do affect a person's exposure to environmental hazards. Racial minorities and low-income populations may have a greater risk for exposure to several unhealthy environmental conditions. These populations are more likely to live near hazardous waste sites, in areas with high air pollution levels, and in poor housing conditions.

While population estimates data is directly included onto the Tracking Network, other data are hosted by the Iowa State Data Center and are linked from the portal.