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Table 1 Methodological characteristics of four cross-sectional surveys

From: Parental compliance - an emerging problem in Liverpool community child health surveys 1991-2006

Characteristics 1991 1993 1998 2006
Number of schools 15 15 10 15
Pre-notification by letter Yes Yes Yes Yes
Sampling Every second child All children All children All children
Re-visits for absenteeism at 2-4 weeks at 2-4 weeks at 2 weeks at 2 weeks
Inclusion/Exclusion none none none none
Months of survey September to December September to December September to December September to December
Age of children 5-11 years 5-11 years 5-11 years 5-11 years
Total number of questionnaires 1872 3746 1964 1074
Mother completed questionnaire 78.5 (1872) 82.8 (3746) 82.0 (1964) 78.0 (1074)
Father completed questionnaire 4.8 (1872) 6.0 (3746) 5.6 (1964) 4.3 (1074)
Both parents completed questionnaire 15.8 (1872) 10.0 (3746) 6.5 (1964) 5.4 (1074)
Questionnaire compliance,%*** 92.0% (1872/2035) 87.4 (3746/4288) 78.1 (1964/2514) 30.3 (1074/3540)
Child’s weight Yes Yes Yes Yes
Child’s height Yes Yes Yes Yes
Questionnaire length Reference unchanged New questions added* New questions added**
Incentives None None None None
  1. *questions on smoking in pregnancy; single parent family.
  2. **Parental level of education, ADHD, alcoholic in pregnancy, grandparent smoking habits during pregnancy
  3. ***Number of completed questionnaires/number distributed.
  4. Five Wallasey schools excluded.