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New MEPS data files are released

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has released new public use data files from the Agency's Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS). MEPS is the third in a series of nationally representative surveys of medical care use and expenditures sponsored by AHRQ. MEPS is cosponsored by the National Center for Health Statistics. The first survey, the National Medical Care Expenditure Survey (NMCES) was conducted in 1977, and the second survey, the National Medical Expenditure Survey (NMES), was carried out in 1987. MEPS began in 1996 and is ongoing.

MEPS collects detailed information on health care use and expenses, sources of payment, and insurance coverage of individuals and families in the United States. MEPS comprises four component surveys: the Household Component, the Medical Provider Component, the Insurance Component, and the Nursing Home Component.

The following MEPS public use data files were released October 2002 and are now available online.

  • MEPS HC-038: 1999 Full-Year Consolidated Data File. Released as an ASCII file (with related SAS programming statements) and an SAS transport dataset, this file provides information collected on a nationally representative sample of the civilian noninstitutionalized U.S. population for calendar year 1999. The file consists of MEPS survey data obtained in rounds 2, 3, 4, and 5 of Panel 3 and rounds 1, 2, and 3 of Panel 4 (i.e., the rounds for the MEPS panels covering calendar year 1999) and consolidates all of the final 1999 person-level variables onto one file. This file contains the following variables previously released on HC-031: survey administration, demographics, employment, health status, and health insurance. The HC-038 file also includes these variables: parent identifiers, access to care and disability days variables, language of interview variable, income variables, use and expenditure variables, and summary yearly health insurance variables.

  • MEPS HC-037: 1999 Medical Conditions File. This public use data file provides information on household-reported medical conditions collected on a nationally representative sample of the civilian noninstitutionalized population of the United States for the 1999 MEPS Household Component. It provides information reported in the 1999 portion of round 3 and rounds 4 and 5 for Panel 3, as well as rounds 1 and 2 and the 1999 portion of round 3 for Panel 4 (i.e., rounds for MEPS panels covering calendar year 1999).

  • MEPS HC-033I: Appendix to MEPS 1999 Event Files. MEPS HC-033I contains two data files: File 1 is used for linking the MEPS 1999 Medical Condition File (HC-037) with the MEPS 1999 event files (HC-033A through HC-033H); File 2 is used for linking the MEPS 1999 Prescribed Medicines Event File (HC-033A) with other 1999 event files. This release also includes two tables provided as PDF Files: Table 1, the "MEPS 1999 Condition-Event Frequency" table contains unweighted and weighted counts of records on the MEPS 1999 event files for each of the conditions, procedures, and clinical classification codes on the MEPS 1999 condition file; Table 2, the "MEPS 1999 Utilization and Expenditures Summary" table contains statistics for all of the utilization and expenditure variables contained on the MEPS 1999 person-level and event-level files.

Select to access the downloadable data files.

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