Welcome to the IHIS Intelligencer

As a registered IHIS data user, you are receiving this newsletter through the new IHIS listserv. Through this newsletter, IHIS users can now get the latest updates on data releases, website features, examples of research and teaching using IHIS, methodological tips, and upcoming workshops and exhibits. Please pass the newsletter along to friends, colleagues, and students who would find IHIS useful.

IHIS (http://www.ihis.us/) now contains approximately 13,500 consistently coded variables and covers the years from 1963 to 2013!

News, April 2015

Dear IHIS Data Users,

The most recent IHIS data release includes over 2000 integrated CAM variables from the 2012 supplement, imputed income files for 1990-1996, and historic access limitation and child health variables.

Integrated CAM variables, and historic variables and supplements released

Talk Data to Us--Upcoming Events with IHIS

Track changes to IHIS data and get important updates

Citation of IHIS

User Support

Integrated CAM variables, and historic variables and supplements released

  • 2000+ variables from the 2012 Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) supplement include the original variables released by NHIS in 2012 as well as variables constructed through special programming that are comparable to CAM variables from previous survey years.
  • Historic Variables from the 2002 survey on barriers to community participation, historic HIV/AIDS testing variables, and child development and child medication variables from the 1981 child health supplement.
  • Talk Data to Us--Upcoming Events with IHIS

    The team from MPC and IHIS will be attending several events in 2015:

  • Population Association of America (PAA) meetings: 4/29-5/2, San Diego, CA
  • AcademyHealth meetings: 6/14-6/16, Minneapolis, MN
  • American Sociological Association (ASA) meetings: 8/22-8/25, Chicago, IL
  • National Conference on Health Statistics/Data Users Conference (NCHS DUC): 8/24-8/26, Bethesda, MD; including a 90-minute, IHIS-hosted "Learning Institute" workshop on 8/24.
  • American Public Health Association (APHA) meetings: 10/31-11/4, Chicago, IL
  • Track changes to IHIS data and get important updates

    Please visit the IHIS Errata and Revisions page. This page allows users to track changes and improvements to IHIS data by noting modifications to the data including new and updated variables, eliminated variables, and any corrections.

    Citation of IHIS

    Publications and research reports based on the IHIS database must cite it appropriately. The citation is as follows:

    Minnesota Population Center and State Health Access Data Assistance Center, Integrated Health Interview Series: Version 5.0. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 2012.

    If possible, citations should also include the URL for the IHIS site: http://www.ihis.us

    User Support

    If you have a question about using IHIS, you can e-mail ihis @umn.edu to receive individualized help from our user support staff.

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    Previous Newsletters

    News, October 2014

    Dear IHIS Data Users,

    The latest IHIS data release unveils our new hierarchical extract system as well as more 2013 data and documentation for an additional 1,000 variables.

    IHIS hierarchical extract builder and more 2013 data

    Visit IHIS

    View changes and updates to IHIS data

    Citation of IHIS

    User Support

    IHIS hierarchical extract builder and more 2013 data

    The latest IHIS release includes access to the new IHIS hierarchical extract system, which allows users to select episode-level data for injuries and poisonings as well as person- and household-level data. These episode-level data were used to create the integrated person-level injury and poisoning variables released by IHIS in June of 2014; episode-level data are now available for users who wish to include more detailed information about injury and poisoning episodes. These episode-level data are only available through hierarchical extracts. This release also integrates data from the 2013 imputed income file and adds full documentation for over 1,000 variables already available through the IHIS extract system. These fully documented variables cover topics including child health conditions, digestive conditions treatment, foot problems, housing modifications, women's health, and exposure in the workplace.

    Visit IHIS

    In 2015 MPC/IHIS will also be at the following events:

  • Population Association of America (PAA) meetings: 4/29-5/2, San Diego, CA
  • AcademyHealth meetings: 6/14-6/16, Minneapolis, MN
  • American Sociological Association (ASA) meetings: 8/22-8/25, Chicago, IL
  • American Public Health Association (APHA) meetings: 10/31-11/4, Chicago, IL
  • Please visit the MPC/IHIS exhibit booth and presentations and talk to our staff at the Gerontological Society of America Annual Meeting, November 5-9, 2014 in Washington DC. We would be happy to answer questions, give a personalized demonstration of the IHIS website and tabulator, and hear how you used IHIS and how we can improve.

    View changes and updates to IHIS data

    Please visit the IHIS Errata and Revisions page. This page allows users to track changes and improvements to IHIS data by noting modifications to the data including new and updated variables, eliminated variables, and any corrections.

    Citation of IHIS

    Publications and research reports based on the IHIS database must cite it appropriately. The citation is as follows:

    Minnesota Population Center and State Health Access Data Assistance Center, Integrated Health Interview Series: Version 5.0. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 2012.

    If possible, citations should also include the URL for the IHIS site: http://www.ihis.us

     

    User Support

    If you have a question about using IHIS, you can e-mail ihis @umn.edu to receive individualized help from our user support staff.

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    News, August 2014

    Dear IHIS Data Users,

    The 2013 IHIS data are now available online! The latest IHIS release includes over 1,500 variables from the 2013 National Health Interview Survey.

    IHIS Releases 2013 Data
    User Support

    IHIS Releases 2013 Data

    The data can be obtained free of charge from our website: https://www.ihis.us/ihis/. Continuing supplement topics included in the 2013 IHIS are:

    • Health Care Access and Utilization variables included to measure the impact of the Affordable Care Act
    • Family and Adult Functioning and Disability Test Questions
    • Family Food Security
    • Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention questions included as part of the Million Hearts Initiative Adult Hepatitis Screening
    • Adult and Child Immunizations
    • Adult Internet Access and Email Utilization
    • Child Mental Health Brief SDQ and Adult Mental Health
    • Child Mental Health Services
    • Non-Cigarette Tobacco Use

    User Support

    If you have a question about using IHIS, you can e-mail ihis @umn.edu to receive individualized help from our user support staff.

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    News, July 2014

    The MPC and IHIS are pleased to announce the winners of the 2013 IHIS research awards. In addition, IHIS has important project updates, including details on recent and upcoming data releases.


    IHIS Research Paper Award Winners
    Recent Data Release
    Upcoming Data Release
    Citation of IHIS

    User Support

    IHIS Research Paper Award Winners

    The IHIS committee co-awarded this year's published paper prize to Jennifer Karas Montez and Anna Zajacova for "Explaining the Widening Education Gap in Mortality among U.S. White Women" (Journal of Health and Social Behavior 54 (2013): 165-181) and to Justin T. Denney, Bridget K. Gorman and Cristina B. Barrera for "Families, Resources, and Adult Health: Where Do Sexual Minorities Fit?" (Journal of Health and Social Behavior 54 (2013): 46-63). The committee selected Christopher Holmes and Anna Zajacova's paper "Education as 'the Great Equalizer': Health Benefits for Black and White Adults" for the best graduate student paper.

    All of the papers selected by the IHIS award committee highlight important relationships between persistent and emerging social disparities and health and provide significant contributions to our understandings of how education in particular does or does not moderate observed inequalities. More details on the recipients of the IHIS research awards, and other IPUMS projects are available here.

    Recent Data Release

    The latest IHIS data release includes data from the 2000-2012 injury and poisoning episode files. IHIS has created person-level variables that are harmonized with person-level injury variables already available in 1997-1999. These variables are now available through the IHIS data extract system.

    IHIS has revised the extensive list of food frequency variables and is releasing new food frequency variables that allow for greater comparability across samples. For more details on these changes, see the new IHIS Revisions and Errata web page. The Revisions and Errata web page allows users to track changes and improvements to the IHIS data by noting changes to the data including new and updated variables, eliminated variables, and any corrections.

    Additionally, this data release provides updated variable-level information pages for an additional 1,000 existing variables. Topics covered by these fully documented variables include breast exams, child schooling, cancer knowledge, diabetes, firearms, food knowledge, health information sources, radon, and vaccinations.

    Upcoming Data Release

    In June, the NCHS released the 2013 data from the National Health Interview Survey; the IHIS staff is working to harmonize the 2013 data and include select variables in the next data release.

    Citation of IHIS

    Publications and research reports based on the IHIS database must cite it appropriately. The citation is as follows:

    Minnesota Population Center and State Health Access Data Assistance Center, Integrated Health Interview Series: Version 5.0. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 2012.

    If possible, citations should also include the URL for the IHIS site: http://www.ihis.us

     

    User Support

    If you have a question about using IHIS, you can e-mail ihis @umn.edu to receive individualized help from our user support staff.

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    News, January 2014

    Upcoming Data Release
    User Note on Variables Monitoring the Affordable Care Act
    Call for Nominations
    Research Tool Reminder: Online Tabulator
    Upcoming Events
    Citation of IHIS

    User Support

    Upcoming Data Release

    IHIS now includes data from the 2012 National Health Interview Survey. Much of the 2012 data was released by IHIS in September 2013.

    Approximately 600 new variables have been added to IHIS, including new variables for the 2012 supplements. New or expanded supplements in 2012 that are now part of IHIS include: child balance (e.g. causes and consequences of balance issues); complementary and alternative medicine; enhanced questions on health care access and utilization; food security; child mental health and child mental health services; tobacco; voice, speech, and language; heart disease and stroke prevention, used to measure the Million Hearts initiative; as well as internet and email usage.

    User Note on Variables Monitoring the Affordable Care Act

    Beginning with the 2011 NHIS, around 85 new questions about health insurance coverage, healthcare access and utilization, and poverty were added to the survey. These variables were explicitly designed to monitor the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The 2012 NHIS made slight modifications to these questions to enhance monitoring of the ACA. IHIS has created a user note that lists these variables, and the State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC) has released a brief on the new variables.

    Call for Nominations

    The Minnesota Population Center is holding its sixth annual competition for the best research papers using the IPUMS microdata collection. Researchers with papers or publications that utilize IHIS - or other IPUMS microdata series - to study social, economic, and/or demographic processes are eligible and encouraged to apply.

    Cash prizes are awarded for the best published work as well as the best work by a graduate student, published or unpublished. The deadline for submission is February 15, 2014. Details on nominating a paper for an award (self-nominations are welcome) are available here.

    Research Tool Reminder: Online Tabulator

    Users can now analyze IHIS data for 1963-2012 with our online tabulator. Our system uses the Survey Documentation and Analysis (SDA) software developed at UC-Berkeley's Computer-assisted Survey Methods Program. The SDA provides access to approximately 12,000 variables and allows users to get frequencies and crosstabulations, create mean comparisons and correlation matrices, generate comparisons of correlations, run multiple regressions as well as probit/logit regressions, and list values of individual cases. As always, users may also utilize the data extract system to download selected variables and years for analysis using major statistical packages.

    Upcoming Events

    Please visit the MPC/IHIS exhibit booth and presentations to talk to our staff. We would be happy to answer questions, to give a personalized demonstration of the IHIS website and tabulator, and to hear how you used IHIS and how we can improve.

    Citation of IHIS

    Publications and research reports based on the IHIS database must cite it appropriately. The citation is as follows:

    Minnesota Population Center and State Health Access Data Assistance Center, Integrated Health Interview Series: Version 5.0. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 2012.

    If possible, citations should also include the URL for the IHIS site: http://www.ihis.us

     

    User Support

    If you have a question about using IHIS, you can e-mail ihis @umn.edu to receive individualized help from our user support staff.

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    News, February 2013

    Data Releases Add 2011 Data
    Pre-1997 Conditions Variables Now Available
    New Imputed Income/Poverty Variables Released
    Full Documentation Available for 1,000 Additional Variables
    Website Feature: IHIS-NHIS Concordance
    Upcoming Events
    Citation of IHIS

    User Support

     

    Data Releases Add 2011 Data

    IHIS now includes data from the 2011 National Health Interview Survey. Much of the 2011 data was released by IHIS in August 2012. The remaining 2011 data are now available.

    New topics covered in 2011 that are now part of IHIS include: service in the armed forces; use of fitness facilities; reasons for not having a usual source of care; steps taken in the past year to save money on medical care (e.g., delaying care, skipping medication doses, buying medicine from foreign countries); most recent ER visit; last health care visit; long-term care insurance; health insurance coverage in the past 3 years; treatment of children's mental health; and food security.

     

    Pre-1997 Conditions Variables Now Available

    The IHIS staff has created over 100 person-level variables from the pre-1997 "condition records". Condition information from that period was collected in the form of many-to-one condition records, where each health condition appears as a single record. This structure made the data from the conditions records difficult to analyze in concert with other IHIS/NHIS data that treat the person or household as the unit of analysis. IHIS now makes it possible to analyze data from the pre-1997 conditions records as person-level data. Users can now analyze chronic conditions such as asthma, diabetes, hypertension, and breast cancer over a longer time series than was previously available.

     

    New Imputed Income/Poverty Variables Released

    The IHIS staff has created new variables that reflect the ratio of imputed income to the federal poverty guidelines. (Note: The federal poverty guidelines are different from the federal poverty thresholds. See here for information on the difference.) These variables (i.e., the POVIMPHHS1 through POVIMPHHS5 series) cover 2009-2011 and are constructed from imputed point estimates of income. Users should refer to the variable descriptions for these variables for links to NHIS documentation on appropriate use of variables with imputed data.

     

    Full Documentation Available for 1,000 Additional Variables

    As of February 2013, approximately 1,000 variables have been moved to the status of having full documentation.

    • AIDS (blood tests, risk, discrimination)
    • health behaviors (general, cigarette and tobacco use, exercise, firearms, sun exposure)
    • cancer testing/screening (colon, genetics, oral, PSA, skin)
    • dental care
    • balance problems
    • conditions (cancer, emotional problems, carpal tunnel syndrome, dermatitis, epilepsy, falls, growth problems, learning disabilities, tinnitus)
    • limitations/aids (use of assistive-listening devices and hearing aids, general devices, hearing limitations, vision limitations)

     

    Website Feature: IHIS-NHIS Concordance

    A key feature of the IHIS website is the IHIS-NHIS Concordance. This feature is especially useful for experienced users of NHIS public-use data. Users can enter an original NHIS variable name to find the name of the equivalent harmonized IHIS variable. Conversely, users can enter the name of a harmonized IHIS variable to learn the name of the original NHIS variable(s).

    For example, if an IHIS user wanted to learn what NHIS variables have been included in the harmonized IHIS variable UNINSURED, the concordance will produce the following output:

    The concordance is also available as a downloadable Excel file.

     

    Upcoming Events

    • Miram L. King and Ryan Moltz. "Differences in Insurance Coverage and Access to Health Care for Married Persons and Same-Sex and Different-Sex Unmarried Partners: Evidence from the National Health Interview Survey, 2007-2011." Eastern Sociological Society Annual Meeting. Boston. March 24, 8:30-9:00am.
    • Sirry Alang and Ellen McGreedy. "Are Patterns of Racial Disparities in Health Status and Health Insurance Coverage in the U.S. Replicated Among Immigrants?" Midwest Sociological Society. Chicago. March 27-30.
    • Ryan Moltz, Miriam L. King, and Christine Kunitz. "The Mainstreaming of U.S. HIV Testing?: Evidence from the U.S. National Health Interview Survey, 1988-2010." Department of Sociology Workshop Series. University of Minnesota. Minneapolis. 1114 Social Sciences. April 2, 4:00-5:15.
    • MPC exhibit, Population Association of America (PAA) Annual Meeting, New Orleans, April 11-13, 2013.
  • Presentations by IHIS staff at PAA:
    • Sirry Alang, Carrie Henning-Smith, and Kathleen Rowan. "Disability, Health Insurance and Serious Psychological Distress (SPD) among U.S. Adults: Evidence from the IHIS."
    • Carrie Henning-Smith and Christine Kunitz. "Demographic predictors of disparities in access to care for children with emotional/behavioral disorders."
    • Miram L. King and Ryan Moltz. "Differences in Insurance Coverage and Access to Health Care for Married Persons and Same-Sex and Different-Sex Unmarried Partners: Evidence from the National Health Interview Survey, 2007-2011."
    • Kathy Rowan and Christine Kunitz. "The Impact of Unmet Health Needs on Self-Rated Health and Out-of-Pocket Spending: Findings from IHIS-MEPS Linked Data."

     

    Citation of IHIS

    Publications and research reports based on the IHIS database must cite it appropriately. The citation is as follows:

    Minnesota Population Center and State Health Access Data Assistance Center, Integrated Health Interview Series: Version 5.0. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 2012.

    If possible, citations should also include the URL for the IHIS site: http://www.ihis.us

     

    User Support

    If you have a question about using IHIS, you can e-mail ihis @umn.edu to receive individualized help from our user support staff.

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    News, October 2011

    Data Release Adds 2010 Data
    5,000 New Variables in IHIS
    Data Release Adds Material for 1963-1968
    New Look for IHIS Variable Descriptions
    Fill Your Data Cart with the IHIS Extract System
    Never a Dumb Question: Selecting the Right Weight
    Visit Us at Upcoming IHIS Events

     

    Data Release Adds 2010 Data

    IHIS now includes data from the 2010 National Health Interview Survey. New topics covered in 2010 and now part of IHIS include: treatment for children with emotional difficulties; quality of life; and occupational health problems (i.e., asthma, dermatitis, and carpal tunnel syndrome). Also included in the 2010 survey are a wide range of variables related to cancer risk factors (such as family history), cancer testing, and cancer treatment.

     

    5,000 New Variables in IHIS

    On the advice of the IHIS Advisory Board, IHIS just added 5,000 new "preliminary variables" in its data release. A written description is not yet included for "preliminary variables," but other elements of the documentation (reporting who answered the question, the question wording, appropriate weights, the codes and frequencies, and the NHIS variable names and source files) are available. All variables included on the IHIS website can be included in a data extract. The preliminary variables can also soon be analyzed using the IHIS online tabulator. These additional integrated variables greatly expand the number of topics researchers can study using IHIS.

     

    Data Release Adds Material for 1963-1968

    IHIS now includes data from the historical public files from 1963 to 1968, created via a partnership between IHIS and staff at the National Center for Health Statistics. To increase comparability across years, IHIS staff reformatted the data from 1962-1967 to be in calendar year rather than fiscal year format, so these historical data differ from the NHIS public use files for the same period. With material extending from 1963 to 2010, IHIS makes it easy to study change in health behaviors, health care, and health status across nearly a half century.

     

    New Look for IHIS Variable Descriptions

    So users can select the level of detail they need, IHIS variable descriptions have a new format. Information on years available, comparability issues, universe, weights, codes and frequencies, survey text, and NHIS source variables now appears behind tabs at the top of variable descriptions. Users who want additional detail in a variable description can bring it up with a mouse click.

    Ihis VarDescription

     

    Fill Your Data Cart with the IHIS Extract System

    It's easier than ever to make an IHIS data extract containing the years and variables you need. The IHIS extract system is now closely integrated with the variable display page. Users can add a variable to their "Data Cart" by clicking on the circle to the left of the variable name, select the samples they need (with all years as the default choice), and then proceed to "check out." Adding and/or subtracting variables and samples is easy. How to use the IHIS extract system is described in the IHIS FAQ.

     

    Never a Dumb Question: Selecting the Right Weight

    Guidance on using weights in IHIS is provided by a user note on weights and in the "weights" tab of the description of each variable. Here's an additional piece of advice: when combining variables with different suggested weights, use the most restrictive weight.

    For example, users might wish to combine a variable available only for sample adults or sample children (e.g., ASTHMAEV, which takes SAMPWEIGHT ) with a variable available for all persons (e.g., SEX, available for all persons and thus taking PERWEIGHT). In such cases, a researcher should select the most restrictive weight (here, SAMPWEIGHT).

    In some cases, the sampling for a single variable changes over time. For example, data on years spent in the U.S., YRSINUS, was collected for foreign-born sample adults in 1997 and for all foreign-born adults other years. The recommended weight for YRSINUS is thus SAMPWEIGHT for 1997 and PERWEIGHT in other years. To analyze all years of data for YRSINUS, researchers should create a new weight variable (e.g., NEWEIGHT) that has the value of SAMPWEIGHT in 1997 and the value of PERWEIGHT in other years.

    If you have a question about using IHIS, you can e-mail ihis @umn.edu to receive individualized help from our user support staff.

     

    Visit Us at Upcoming IHIS Events

    Please visit the MPC/IHIS exhibit booth and presentations to talk to our staff. We would be happy to answer questions, to give a personalized demonstration of the IHIS website and tabulator, and to hear how you used IHIS and how we can improve.

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