, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 268–276 | Cite as

Does Urban Sprawl Impact on Self-Rated Health and Psychological Distress? A Multilevel Study from Sydney, Australia

  • Bin B. JalaludinEmail author
  • Frances L. Garden
Original Contribution


Mental health can be influenced by a number of neighbourhood physical and social environmental characteristics. We aimed to determine whether urban sprawl (based on population density) in Sydney, Australia, is associated with self-rated health and psychological distress. We used a cross-sectional multilevel study design. Individual level data on self-rated health and psychological distress were obtained from the 2006 and 2007 NSW Population Health Survey. We did not find significant associations between urban sprawl and self-rated health and psychological distress after controlling for individual and area level covariates. However, positive neighbourhood factors were generally associated with better self-rated health and lower psychological distress but few of these associations were statistically significant.


Urban sprawl Self-rated health Psychological distress Adults Multilevel modelling 



We thank the New South Wales Health Survey Program, Centre for Epidemiology and Research, for collecting the data and the Chief Health Officer, NSW Health for approving the use of the data.


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Copyright information

© International Association for Ecology and Health 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Research, Evidence Management and Surveillance, Clinical Support Cluster (Western)LiverpoolAustralia
  2. 2.School of Public Health and Community MedicineUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia
  3. 3.Woolcock Institute of Medical ResearchUniversity of SydneyGlebeAustralia

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