Codes and Frequencies
For all persons, HISINGLE indicates whether the person currently had a single health insurance plan, such as a plan for dental, vision, or prescriptions. Respondents were asked what kind of health insurance they had and shown a flash card which listed different types of insurance coverage. Respondents could pick more than one type of insurance and interviewers were instructed to mark all that applied.
Prior to 1999, single service plans were not considered a form of health insurance and respondents were asked to exclude such plans when responding to a question on whether they had insurance coverage. This policy changed for 1999 forward, and the category of single service plan was added to the list of possible responses.
The Field Representative's Manual for 1999 described single service plans as:
"health insurance coverage paid for by the individual that provides for only one type of service. Examples of SSPs are dental care, vision care, prescriptions, nursing home care, hospice care, accidents, catastrophic care, cancer treatment, AIDS care, and/or hospitalization."
Users are strongly advised to review the variable, SINGLEE, a recoded variable indicating single service plan that has been edited by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).
During the course of data editing, the NCHS discovered many errors in the responses to questions about insurance coverage. Often, respondents misclassified the type of insurance they had. This might be shown, for example, by a mismatch between the verbatim name of an insurance plan and the type of insurance coverage the person selected from the categories on the card. The NCHS reassigned respondents to the appropriate category based on the plan name.
The NCHS strongly advises analysts to use these recoded insurance variables as a more reliable source of information about the types of insurance coverage than is provided by respondents' original and unedited answers about their insurance type.
For 2004 forward, the survey included an additional probe question for all persons who indicated they were not covered by health insurance or did not indicate single service plan coverage. A
person who responded to either HISINGLE or SSPROB received the single service detail questions.
SSPROB, Single service plan probe response
In follow-up questions, interviewers about the type of services provided; variables for these services are:
- SSACCID, Single service plan for accidents
- SSAIDS, Single service plan for AIDS care
- SSCANCER, Single service plan for cancer treatment
- SSCATAST, Single service plan for catastrophic care
- SDENTALE, Single service plan for dental care
- SSDISABL, Single service plan for disability insurance
- SSDRUGS, Single service plan for prescriptions
- SSHOSPIC, Single service plan for hospice care
- SSHOSPIT, Single service plan for hospitalization only
- SSLONGT, Single service plan for long term care
- SSVISION, Single service plan for vision care
- SSOTHER, Single service plan for other [type of care]
Users may also want to see the variable description for SINGLE, which indicates any single service coverage for 1989 and for 1993 forward.
Users are also encouraged to review the user note Insurance Data Collection .
HISINGLE is comparable over time.
The number of other response categories changed over time as public programs became available and forms of public and private insurance categories were collapsed or expanded, but it is not clear if this would affect HISINGLE. For example, in 1999, the Children's health Insurance Program was became a response category, and the response "and in 2000 the category "no coverage of any type" was added.
Users should be aware that the responses for HISINGLE were not edited by the NCHS for accuracy of the type of insurance coverage. However, the variables for what kind of service was provided by the single service plan (e.g, SSACCID, Single service plan for accidents) have been edited for accuracy.
The NCHS edited responses to plan types based on plan name; SINGLEE indicates single service plan, but has been edited for accuracy based on plan name. The NCHS strongly advises analysts to use these recoded insurance variables as a more reliable source of information about the types of insurance coverage than is provided by respondents' original and unedited answers about their insurance type. HISINGLE is not back-edited and reflect the respondents' original replies.
- 1999: All persons with health insurance coverage
- 2000-2017: All persons.
- 1999-2017 : PERWEIGHT