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Have difficulty reaching over head: Yes or no

Codes and Frequencies

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For sample persons aged 55 or older in 1984, and for persons aged 18 or older in the National Health Interview Survey-Disability Survey (NHIS-D) Phase I sample in 1994 and 1995, FLREACHYN reports if, the person has difficulty reaching up over the head (in all years) and/or reaching out as if to shake someone's hand (in 1994 and 1995).


In 1994 and 1995, this variable is part of the Disability Supplement (NHIS-D) that collects information on disability. NHIS-D included two household interviews: in Phase I all members of sample families were screened for any indication of disability; in Phase II persons with any indication of disability were followed-up for additional information. Phase I includes sensory, communication, and mobility problems; health conditions; activities of daily living and independent activities of daily living; functional limitations; mental health; services and benefits; special health needs of children; early child development; education; relationship to respondent; and perceived disability. Phase II includes four Disability Followback Survey (DFS) questionnaires: one for children, one for adults, one for elderly persons (69 years of age and over) without any indication of disability (also called the Supplement on Aging or SOA; only in 1994), and one for persons with a history of polio.

This variable is part of a series of variables related to the difficulty of doing various activities which may be expected in a work setting or in housework, and the number of years this difficulty has persisted.


Changes in universe and question wording limit comparability between samples.

In 1984, sample persons ages 55 and older were asked if they have any difficulty reaching up over their head, by themselves and without using aids.

In 1994 and 1995, the universe included persons ages 18 and older in the National Health Interview Survey-Disability Survey (NHIS-D) Phase I sample. The question reports whether the person has "any difficulty reaching up over the head or reaching out as if to shake someone's hand." Unlike previous years, reporting in 1994 and 1995 was done by a household respondent. Persons who are not the household respondent were reported by proxy.


  • 1984: Sample persons age 55+.
  • 1994-1995: Persons aged 18 years and older in the NHIS-D Phase I sample.


  • 1984, 1994-1995