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Received care from one or more private insurance plans in the past 12 months

Codes and Frequencies

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For all persons, PHICARE reports whether the person received care from one or more private insurance plans in the past 12 months. Private insurance plans were defined as health plans that pay for all or part of hospital, doctor or surgeon's bills, except for plans that pay only accidents.

The definition, order and wording of private health insurance changed over time to reflect changes in the availability of different types of coverage and issues of interest. Users are strongly encouraged to review the user notes Insurance Data Collection and Private Insurance Definitions.


PHICARE has no comparability issues.

This variable is not comparable with the variables for 1997 forward, which reflects responses edited for accuracy by the NCHS. During the course of data editing, the NCHS discovered many errors in the responses to questions about insurance coverage. 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. Users are also strongly encouraged to review the user note Insurance Data Collection.


  • 1976: Persons covered by private surgical and/or private hospital insurance.


  • 1976