Medical Expenditures Panel Survey (MEPS)


Sponsoring organizations: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)

Main Purpose of Data Collection:

To provide data about health care use and costs to improve economic projections. There are three main components—Household (HC), Insurance (IC), and Medical Provider (MPC); and one supplement—Nursing Home Component (NHC).

Periodicity of Data Collection:

Annual. HC and IC conducted from 1996-2000. NHC was a one-time survey in 1996. MPC is ongoing.

Type of Survey:

• Longitudinal: yearly sample followed for 2 years with five in-person interviews over the 2 years (approximately every 5-6 months).

• HC is conducted as a personal interview in respondents’ households. Both the IC and MPC consist of telephone interviews and mailed survey materials. The NHC was a year-long survey that consisted of inperson interviews with nursing ho me sources and telephone interviews with next of kin.

• MPC is not available for public use.

Sample Size:

HC: 1997:12,600 households, 34,000 individuals

1998:10,500 households,

23,000 individuals

IC: Each year approximately 36,900 establishments and individuals (7,000 establishments from HC, 27,000 establishments from the Census Bureau’s list of private-sector businesses, 1,900 government offices from Census list of government employers,

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