The Department of Health and Human Services is conducting the Preventive Health Survey (PHS) from October 2016 to June 2017.

The PHS is the first of its kind in Australia. It looks at how people’s attitudes, beliefs, social norms and understanding of health issues help to determine their health and lifestyle behaviours including tobacco consumption, fruit and vegetable intake, physical activity and weight.

The survey is being conducted for the second time. It is a telephone survey, and comprises two components:

  • a survey of adults 18 years and over
  • a survey of young people 14 to 17 years and parents or carers of children from 5 to 13 years.

Over the coming months your household may be randomly chosen to participate. Your participation is important to us, as PHS data is used extensively for planning and policy purposes. 

Participation is voluntary; however, in order for us to collect accurate information, as many households as possible need to participate. All the information you provide is treated in strict confidence.

We may invite you to participate by letter, phone or text. You may receive:

  • a letter from the Victorian Chief Preventive Health Officer
  • a phone call from the Social Research Centre (the survey research firm contracted by the department)
  • a text message from the Social Research Centre.

The text message reads:

This is a message from the Department of Health and Human Services. The Social Research Centre will be calling this number in the coming days to see if you are eligible for the Preventive Health Survey. Reply ‘1’ if you are a Victorian resident. Reply ‘2’ if you are NOT a Victorian resident or Reply ‘3’ to opt out. For more information about the survey call SRC on 1800 023 040 or visit

Interviews are being conducted on mobile and landline phones across Victoria and take about 15 minutes.

The survey is conducted in nine different languages. Information for these participants can be found on the Health Translations website.

Participant information for adults 

Participant information for parents

Approach letter to adults

Approach letter to parents

If you are approached to participate in the PHS and have concerns that the approach is not genuine, you can email the department at or phone 1800 354 322.

You can also contact us on 1800 354 322 between 8am and 8pm, 7 days a week to arrange an interview time that best suits you.