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[IN] HEA HIN
[SU] SVY AVO
-- WITH PHOTO -- TO HEALTH, AND NATIONAL EDITORS:
Statement by Census Bureau Director John H. Thompson on Improved
Health Insurance Questions in the Current Population Survey
WASHINGTON, April 15, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The recent
changes to the Current Population Survey's questions related to health
insurance coverage is the culmination of 14 years of research and two
national tests in 2010 and 2013 clearly showing the revised questions
provide more precise measures of health insurance through improved
This change was announced in September 2013 and implemented because
the evidence showed that reengineering the questions provides
demonstrably more accurate results. The Census Bureau only implements
changes in survey methodology based on research, testing, and evidence
presented for peer review.
The revised questions were implemented in the Current Population
Survey beginning in February 2014 in time for data collection covering
calendar year 2013, and thus will provide a more accurate baseline for
assessments of changes in insurance coverage, including that of the
Affordable Care Act.
Based on more than a decade of comprehensive research to improve the
measure of the Nation's uninsured population and give the country
better data, the U.S. Census Bureau redesigned the health insurance
coverage questions for the Current Population Survey. The new method
captures current health insurance coverage, in addition to coverage
throughout the entire year. Results from two separate national test
of the new questions in 2010 and 2013 showed that the new method
captured health insurance coverage better than the old method.
Specifically, it improved the respondent recall of when they were
covered by health insurance and then works backwards through time
about specific months of coverage. Based on the test results and 14
years of research, the new questions were included in this the
February, March and April CPS (reflecting the collection of data for
2013). The CPS will act to provide an accurate baseline for 2013 to
facilitate the assessment of the impact of the Affordable Care Act
implemented in 2014.
Additionally, The American Community Survey, the largest household
survey conducted by the Census Bureau, has collected health insurance
coverage information since 2008 and provides additional measure of
health insurance coverage at the nation, state and local levels on an
annual basis. However, unlike the Current Population Survey, the ACS
only asks respondents about a specific point in time.
2013 Content Test
Changing the CPS Health Insurance Questions And The Implications On
The Uninsured Rate: Redesign and Production Estimates
2010 Survey of Health Insurance and Program Participation
SHADAC Report: SHADAC Analysis of the Survey of Health Insurance and
Previous Research Leading to the Redesigned Questionnaire
2009: Findings from a Pretest of a New Approach to Measuring Health
Insurance in the Current Population Survey
2007: Measuring Health Insurance in the U.S.
2002: The Effects of Person-Level VS. Household-Level
Questionnaire Design on Survey Estimates and Data Quality
Research Unavailable Online
Pascale, Joanne, Marc I. Roemer and Dean M. Resnick, 2009. Medicaid
Underreporting in the CPS: Results from a Record Check Study. 2010.
Survey Methodology for Public Health Researchers: Selected Readings
from 20 years of Public Opinion Quarterly. Frank J. Fowler Jr. (guest
editor). Online ISSN 1537-5331 - Print ISSN 0033-362X. Also in Public
Opinion Quarterly 2009 73: 497-520.
Pascale, J. (2009). "Health Insurance Measurement: A Synthesis of
Cognitive Testing Results." Paper presented at the Questionnaire
Evaluation Standards (QUEST) meeting, Bergen, Norway.
Pascale, J. (2009). "Survey Measurement of Health Insurance Coverage
Cognitive Testing Results of Experimental Questions on Integrated
Current and Calendar Year Coverage." Unpublished Census Bureau report.
February 3, 2009.
Pascale, Joanne (2008/9). "Assessing Measurement Error in Health
Insurance Reporting: A Qualitative Study of the Current Population
Survey." Inquiry Journal 45(5) Winter 2008/2009 pp 422-437.
Pascale, J. (2007), "Questionnaire Design Experimental Research Survey
(QDERS) 2004 Results Overview." Unpublished Census Bureau report.
August 29, 2007.
Pascale, J. (2006), "Measuring Health Insurance in the U.S."
Proceedings of the American Association for Public Opinion Research
(AAPOR), American Statistical Association, 2006.
Pascale, J. (2004), "Medicaid and Medicare Reporting in Surveys: An
Experiment on Order Effects and Program Definitions." Proceedings of
the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR), American
Pascale, J. (2003) Questionnaire Design Experimental Research Survey
(QDERS) 2004 Cognitive Testing Results on Health Insurance Questions.
Unpublished Census Bureau report. November 5, 2004.
Pascale, J. (2001), "Measuring Private and Public Health Coverage:
Results from a Split-Ballot Experiment on Order Effects." Paper
presented at the 2001 Annual Meetings of the American Association for
Public Opinion Research, Proceedings of the Section on Survey Research
Methods, American Statistical Association, 2001.
Hess, J., J. Moore, J. Pascale, J. Rothgeb, and C. Keeley (2001), "The
Effects of Person-level vs. Household-level Questionnaire Design on
Survey Estimates and Data Quality." Public Opinion Quarterly Winter
Pascale, J. (1999) "Methodological Issues in Measuring the
Uninsured." Paper presented at the Seventh Health Survey Research
Methods Conference, Proceedings. U.S. Dept. of Health and Human
Services, National Center for Health Statistics. Hyattsville,
Maryland, pp. 167-173.
CB14-67 Public Information Office 301-763-3030 email:
SOURCE U.S. Census Bureau
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SU: SVY AVO
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