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Has one or more private surgical plans: Obtained through employer or union

Codes and Frequencies

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For persons who mentioned that they had a private health insurance health plan for surgical expenses, PHISOBEMP indicates if the plan was obtained through an employer, union or workplace.

In 1976, private insurance was any type of insurance that paid for any part of a hospital, doctor or surgeon's bill, excluding single service plans but including plans which paid extra cash while hospitalized.

The definition of private insurance changed over time. Users are strongly encouraged to review the user notes Insurance Data Collection and Private Insurance Definitions.


There are no comparability problems with PHISOBEMP.

Users should not combine PHISOBEMP with variables for 1997 forward. For 1997 forward, the NCHS edited responses to the question on what kind of coverage the respondent had (private, Medicaid, Medicare, etc.) based on the plan name given. 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 name of the plan given by the respondent and the type of insurance coverage the person selected from the categories on the card. Users should be aware that the responses for PHISOBEMP have not been edited for accuracy and respondents may have mistakenly reported what type of insurance they had.


  • 1976: Persons covered by private surgical insurance.


  • 1976