The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey got underway in Riverside County on Aug. 30. The program monitors the health and nutritional status of the U.S. population.

Public health officials, legislators and physicians use the information to develop effective health policies and programs. Also, national references are produced and standardized growth charts are created for pediatricians across the country using the data.

Each year, 5,000 residents of all ages and race and ethnicities across the nation may participate in the latest NHNES the National Center for Health Statistics, part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, conducts.

Respondents first participate in a health interview in their home followed by a health examination that takes place in one of three mobile examination centers.

No medical care is provided directly in the mobile examination center, but a report on physical findings is given to each participant along with an explanation from survey medical staff. The various tests and procedures depend on the participant’s age. All information collected in the survey is kept strictly confidential and privacy is protected by public law.

Residents will have an invitation-only opportunity to participate in NHANES. Individuals who agree to participate will receive compensation for their time and travel expenses of up to $125.