Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Prevalence of Health Problems Targeted by the National School-based Screening Program among Primary School Students in Saudi Arabia, 2019

Version 1 : Received: 4 September 2021 / Approved: 7 September 2021 / Online: 7 September 2021 (09:59:44 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Al Daajani, M.M.; Al-Habib, D.M.; Ibrahim, M.H.; Al Shewear, N.A.; Fagihi, Y.M.; Alzaher, A.A.; Alfaleh, A.F.; Alabdulkareem, K.I. Prevalence of Health Problems Targeted by the National School-Based Screening Program among Primary School Students in Saudi Arabia, 2019. Healthcare 2021, 9, 1310. Al Daajani, M.M.; Al-Habib, D.M.; Ibrahim, M.H.; Al Shewear, N.A.; Fagihi, Y.M.; Alzaher, A.A.; Alfaleh, A.F.; Alabdulkareem, K.I. Prevalence of Health Problems Targeted by the National School-Based Screening Program among Primary School Students in Saudi Arabia, 2019. Healthcare 2021, 9, 1310.

Journal reference: Healthcare 2021, 9, 1310
DOI: 10.3390/healthcare9101310

Abstract

The Ministry of Health (MOH) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) established a National School-based Screening Program (NSBSP) for health screening of school-going children. Students from specific grades were systematically screened for several health problems including obesity, visual and auditory problems, dental cavities, scoliosis, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This cross-sectional study aimed to determine the prevalence of these health problems among primary school students based on secondary data obtained from the NSBSP. We included 444,259 screened school children from the 1st and 4th grades of 50% of the selected schools (both private and public) across the KSA during the academic year 2018-2019. Among them, the most prevalent health problems identified were dental cavities (38.7%), eye refractory errors (10.9%), and overweight and obesity (10.5%); the less prevalent problems included ADHD (2.81%), auditory problems (0.6%), and scoliosis (0.48%). A greater prevalence of most health problems was observed in girls than boys. The NSBSP successfully aided the detection of health conditions with high and low prevalence among primary school students in the KSA, and thus, identification of health problems of specific concern. Implementation of effective school health services for the prevention, early detection, diagnosis, and treatment of these health problems is imperative.

Keywords

Health Status; National Survey; KSA; School Health; Students

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