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Taiwan Birth Cohort Study (TBCS)
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Recognizing the significance of children’s living condition during a period of rapid social change and the potential consequences throughout the life course, the Taiwan Birth Cohort Study (TBCS) was initiated in 2003 under the auspices of the Taiwan HPA.
Aim of the Study
The study has three main goals: (1) to record and assess health and developmental trajectories of children in Taiwan; (2) to examine the early origins of adult health; (3) to investigate the impact of social environment on children’s wellbeing.
Sampling and Survey Method
To gain experience for planning and implementation of the large-scale birth cohort survey, a random small-scale sample that comprised children born in November and December, 2003 were selected. This pilot sample was surveyed at age 6 months, 18 months, 3 years, 5.5 years and 8 years as planned for the large-scale sample. The full-scale TBCS enrolled a nationally-representative sample of more than 20,000 children born in 2005 (sampling rate: 11.7%).
Content of the Survey
Data collection is based on face-to-face interviews with mothers or primary caregivers, covering a wide range of information about social and physical exposures of the children in relation to family, neighborhood and institutions such as child care. Children’s wellbeing, including physical growth, psychosocial development and health conditions, is also recorded at each survey.
The sample size and response rate for the pilot study and the large-scale study as shown in Table 1 and Table 2, respectively.
Table 1. The sample size and response rate of the pilot study
Age of the Sample
Table 2. The sample size and response rate of the large-scale study
Age of the Sample
Note: Due to the survey at age 8 is ongoing the sample size and response rate is not applicable for survey at 8 years.
The first and second wave of results was performed for the publication of “Health Profile for Children of the 21st Century in Taiwan: from Birth to 18 Months (in Chinese)”. The full content of the book can be free downloaded from the Taiwan HPA website (http://health99.hpa.gov.tw/educZone/edu_detail.aspx?Catid=21708). The information gathered on the children’s development, family environment and child care institutions with addition to a rich data resource shed new insight into health profile of children growing up in Taiwan at the start of 21st century. We are preparing the second book about the health profile for children ages 3 to 5 years.