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How often get emotional support

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EMOSUPPORT reports responses by sample adults to the question, "How often do you get the social and emotional support you need? Would you say always, usually, sometimes, rarely, or never?"

Related Variables 

The question for EMOSUPPORT is one of a series included in the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) as part of the Healthy People 2010 initiative. One goal of this initiative is to "promote the health of people with disabilities, prevent secondary conditions, and eliminate disparities between people with and without disabilities in the U.S. population." More specifically, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Healthy People 2010, V. II, Objectives for Improving Health, articulated the following goal: "Increase the proportion of adults with disabilities reporting sufficient emotional support" (i.e., to achieve parity with adults without disabilities). In this context, a response of "always" or "usually" in EMOSUPPORT was considered evidence of "sufficient social support." (See U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Tracking Healthy People 2010. Part B: Operational Definitions #6.)

Other variables used to track different aspects of social support for the Healthy People 2010 initiative and included in the 2001 NHIS are:

  • How often felt happy, past 30 days (HAPPY30)
  • Got together socially with friends or neighbors, past 2 weeks (SAWFRIEND
  • Talked with friends or neighbors on the telephone, past 2 weeks (CALLFRIEND)
  • Got together with any relatives with whom they did not live, past 2 weeks (SAWRELS)
  • Talked on the telephone with any relatives with whom they did not live, past 2 weeks (CALLRELS)
  • Went to church, temple, or another place of worship for services or other activities, past 2 weeks (WORSHIP)
  • Went to a show, movie, sports event, club meeting, class or other group event, past 2 weeks (GROUPEVENT)
  • Went out to eat at a restaurant, past 2 weeks (ATEOUT)


This variable is only available in 2001.


  • 2001: Sample adults age 18+.


  • 2001