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Single service plan recode

Codes and Frequencies

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For all persons, SINGLEE reports whether the respondent currently had a single health insurance plan. Interviewers handed respondents a card with categories of insurance types, and single service plan was among the recognized responses.

Respondents were then asked what type of single service plan they had and handed a list with different types of single service insurance coverage. Interviewers instructed them to mark all that applied.

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 SINGLE or SSPROB,single service plan probe response, were asked about the type of service.

Related variables
In follow-up questions, interviewers about the type of services provided:

  • SSAIDS, Single service plan for AIDS care
  • SSCANCER, Single service plan for cancer treatment
  • SSCATAST, Single service plan for catastrophic 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
  • SSLONGT, Single service plan for long term care
  • SSVISION, Single service plan for vision care
  • SSOTHER, Single service plan for some other type of care


SSINGLEE is mostly comparable; however the percent of respondents indicating single service coverage may increase for 2004 as a result of the probe question.

In addition, the number of response categories changed over time as public programs became available and forms of public and private insurance categories were collapsed or expanded. It is not clear how this would affect reporting of single service coverage.

SINGLEE is not comparable with variables from before 1997, such as HI1SSTYP. Beginning in 1997, the NCHS edited responses to what kind of insurance coverage respondents had based on plan name. Prior to 1997, individuals may have mistakenly reported having a single service plan but such errors were not edited for accuracy. In surveys before 1997, it is possible that not all individuals who indicated having a single service plan actually had such plans. This reduces comparability over time.

The NHIS strongly advises analysts to use 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.


  • 1999-2013; 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018: All persons.


  • 1999-2018