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2003 National Healthcare Quality Report

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National Home and Hospice Care Survey (NHHCS)


U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

Mode of Administration

Data are collected through personal interviews with administrators and staff. No patient was interviewed directly.

Survey Sample Design

The sample design was a stratified two stage probability design. The first stage consisted of the selection of a stratified sample of agencies. Each agency was placed into 1 of 24 strata based on type of agency, Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) status, and region.

The second stage of sample selection, sampling of six current patients and six discharges within each agency, was done using a sample selection table to obtain systematic probability samples of current patients and of discharges.

Primary Survey Content

Data are collected on referral and length of service, diagnoses, number of visits, patient charges, health status, reason for discharge, and types of services provided.

Population Targeted

Patients of U.S. home health and hospice care agencies.

Demographic Data

Gender, age, educational attainment, race/ethnicity, marital status and health status.

Years Collected

For individual years from 1992-1994, 1996, 1998, and 2000.



Geographic Estimates

The NHHCS covers all types of home health and hospice care agencies in the United States. Geographic identifiers are available by the U.S. Bureau of Census regions and metropolitan statistical area (MSA) indicators.

Contact information

Agency homepage:

Data system homepage:


Haupt BJ. Characteristics of hospice care users: Data from the 1996 National Home and Hospice Care Survey. Advance data from vital and health statistics; no. 299. Hyattsville, Maryland, National Center for Health Statistics. 1998.

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