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Health Interview Survey, 1981

Resource Type
Dataset : clinical data, survey data
  • United States Department of Health and Human Services. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. National Center for Health Statistics
Other Title
  • Version 3 (Subtitle)
Collective Title
  • National Health Interview Survey Series
Publication Date
Free Keywords
chronic disabilities; chronic illnesses; disabilities; doctor visits; families; health; health care; health care services; health problems; hospitalization; household composition; illness
  • Abstract

    The purpose of the Health Interview Survey is to obtain information about the amount and distribution of illness, its effects in terms of disability and chronic impairments, and the kinds of health services people receive. There are five types of records in the core survey, each in a separate data file. The variables in the Household File (Part 1) include type of living quarters, size of family, number of families in the household, presence of a telephone, number of unrelated individuals, and region. The Person File (Part 2) includes information on sex, age, race, marital status, Hispanic origin, education, veteran status, family income, family size, major activities, health status, activity limits, employment status, and industry and occupation. These variables are found in the Condition, Doctor Visit, and Hospital Episode Files as well. The Person File also supplies data on height, weight, bed days, doctor visits, hospital stays, years at residence, and region variables. The Condition File (Part 3) contains information for each reported health condition, with specifics on injury and accident reports. The Hospital Episode File (Part 4) provides information on medical conditions, hospital episodes, type of service, type of hospital ownership, date of admission and discharge, number of nights in hospital, and operations performed. The Doctor Visit File (Part 5) documents doctor visits within the time period and identifies acute or chronic conditions. A sixth file has been provided. The Child Health Supplement File (Part 6) provides detailed data on child health and development. This supplement offers information on age of child, sex, birth-date, physical and social development, family relationships, prenatal care, hospitalization and illness, behavior, schooling, and seat-belt usage.
  • Methods

    Detailed information regarding the use of weights is located within the documentation.
  • Methods

    ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection: Created online analysis version with question text..
  • Table of Contents


    • DS0: Study-Level Files
    • DS1: Household
    • DS2: Person
    • DS3: Condition
    • DS4: Hospital Episode
    • DS5: Doctor Visit
    • DS6: Child Health Supplement
Temporal Coverage
  • Time period: 1981
  • Collection date: 1981
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Sampled Universe
Civilian, noninstitutionalized population of the United States.
A multistage probability sample was used in selecting housing units. Approximately 116,000 persons in 40,000 households were sampled.
Collection Mode
  • face-to-face interview

    Corrections to Part 2, Person File, are included where the original data on age, sex, or date of birth have been found to be in error.

    These data files contain weights that must be used in any analysis.

    Per agreement with the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), ICPSR distributes the data files and text of the technical documentation for this collection as prepared by NCHS.

    The original column locations for variables C_1704, C_2015, and C_2016 in the Child Health Supplement File (Part 6) have been modified; the column locations provided by the NCHS were incorrect. Variables C_2015 and C_2016 have been renamed to accurately reflect the proper column locations. C_2015 is now named C_2016, and C_2016 is now named C_2017.

2011-04-25 The Child Health Supplement (Part 6) has now been made available to users.2011-04-14 A full product suite (SAS, SPSS, Stata) has been created and added to the collection. Some corresponding documentation has been added or updated and pre-existing data files have been replaced.
This version of the study is no longer available on the web. If you need to acquire this version of the data, you have to contact ICPSR User Support (
Alternative Identifiers
  • 8319 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR08319.v4
  • Is new version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR08319.v2
  • (author unknown). Measuring Childhood Asthma Prevalence Before and After the 1997 Redesign of the National Health Interview Survey--United States. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.49, (40), 908-911.2000.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Anonymous. Measuring childhood asthma prevalence before and after the 1997 redesign of the National Health Interview Survey--United States. JAMA, The Journal of the American Medical Association.284, (18), 2312 -2000.
  • Mannino, D.M., Homa, D.M., Pertowski, C.A., Ashizawa, A., Nixon, L.L., Johnson, C.A., Ball, L.B., Jack, E., Kang, D.S.. Surveillance for asthma--United States, 1960-1995. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.47, (1), 1-27.1998.
  • Pierce, John P., Gilpin, Elizabeth A., Emery, Sherry L., White, Martha M., Rosbrook, Brad, Berry, Charles C.. Has the California Tobacco Control Program reduced smoking?. JAMA, The Journal of the American Medical Association.280, (10), 893-899.1998.
    • ID: 10.1001/jama.280.10.893 (DOI)
  • Waidmann, Timothy, Bound, John, Schoenbaum, Michael. The illusion of failure: Trends in self-reported health in the U.S. elderly. Milbank Quarterly.73, (2), 253-287.1995.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Yelin, Edward H., Katz, Patricia P.. Labor force trends of persons with and without disabilities. Monthly Labor Review.117, (10), 36-42.1994.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Barbarin, Oscar A., Soler, Robin E.. Behavioral, emotional, and academic adjustment in a national probability sample of African American children: Effects of age, gender, and family structure. Journal of Black Psychology.19, (4), 423-446.1993.
    • ID: 10.1177/00957984930194004 (DOI)
  • Weitzman, M., Gortmaker, S.L., Sobol, A.M., Perrin, J.M.. Recent trends in the prevalence and severity of childhood asthma. JAMA, The Journal of the American Medical Association.268, (19), 2673-2677.1992.
    • ID: 10.1001/jama.268.19.2673 (DOI)
  • Wetterhall, S.F., Olson, D.R., DeStefano, F., Stevenson, J.M., Ford, E.S., German, R.R., Will, J.C., Newman, J.M., Sepe, S.J., Vinicor, F.. Trends in diabetes and diabetic complications, 1980-1987. Diabetes Care.15, (8), 960-967.1992.
    • ID: 10.2337/diacare.15.8.960 (DOI)
  • Gortmaker, Steven L., Wallker, Deborah K., Weitzman, Michael, Sobol, Arthur M.. Chronic conditions, socioeconomic risks, and behavioral problems in children and adolescents. Pediatrics.85, (3), 267-276.1990.
  • Mauldon, Jane. The effect of marital disruption on children's health. Demography.27, (3), 431-446.1990.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Novotny, T.E., Fiore, M.C., Hatziandreu, E.J., Giovino, G.A., Mills, S.L., Pierce, J.P.. Trends in smoking by age and sex, United States, 1974-1987: the implications for disease impact. Preventive Medicine.19, (5), 552-561.1990.
    • ID: 10.1016/0091-7435(90)90053-M (DOI)
  • Weitzman, M., Gortmaker, S., Sobol, A.. Racial, social, and environmental risks for childhood asthma. American Journal of Diseases of Children.144, (11), 1189-1194.1990.
  • Weitzman, M., Gortmaker, S., Walker, D.K., Sobol. A.. Maternal smoking and childhood asthma. Pediatrics.85, (4), 505-511.1990.
  • Crimmins, Eileen M., Saito, Yasuhiko, Ingegneri, Dominique. Changes in Life Expectancy and Disability-Free Life Expectancy in the United States. Population and Development Review.15, (2), 235-267.1989.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Feinleib, Manning, Rosenberg, Harry M., Collins, John G., Delozier, James E., Pokras, Robert, Chevarley, Frances M.. Trends in COPD morbidity and mortality in the United States. American Review of Respiratory Disease.140, (3 Pt. 2), 1989.
  • Wolinsky, Fredric, Aguirre, Benigno, Fann, Lih-Jiuan, Niederhauer, John C., Dietrich, Kathy. Ethnic difference in the demand for physician and hospital utilization among older adults in major American cities: Conspicuous evidence of considerable inequalities. Milbank Quarterly.67, (3-4), 412-449.1989.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Johansen, A.S., Leibowitz, A., Waite, L.J.. Child care and children's illness. American Journal of Public Health.78, (9), 1175-1177.1988.
    • ID: 10.2105/AJPH.78.9.1175 (DOI)
  • Presser, Harriet B.. Place of child care and medicated respiratory illness among young American children. Journal of Marriage and Family.50, (4), 995-1005.1988.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Seltzer, Judith A., Bianchi, Suzanne M.. Children's Contact with Absent Parents. Journal of Marriage and Family.50, (3), 663-677.1988.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Wolinsky, Fredric D., Arnold, Connie Lea. A different prespective on health and health services utilization. Annual Review of Gerontology and Geriatrics.89, 71-101.1988.
  • Blumberg, M.S.. Inter-area variations in age-adjusted health status. Medical Care.25, (4), 340-353.1987.
    • ID: 10.1097/00005650-198704000-00007 (DOI)
  • Labbok, M.H., Hendershot, G.E.. Does breast-feeding protect against malocclusion? An analysis of the 1981 Child Health Supplement to the National Health Interview Survey. American Journal of Preventive Medicine.3, 227-232.1987.
  • Manton, Kenneth G., Patrick, Clifford H., Johnson, Katrina W.. Health differentials between blacks and whites: recent trends in mortality and morbidity. Milbank Quarterly.65, (Suppl 1), 129-199.1987.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Ycas, Martynas A.. Recent trends in health near the age of retirement: new findings from the health interview survey. Social Security Bulletin.50, (2), 5-30.1987.
  • Bianchi, Suzanne M., Seltzer, Judith A.. Life Without Father. American Demographics.8, (12), 42 -1986.
  • Poe, G.S.. Design and Procedures for the 1981 Child Health Supplement to the National Health Interview Survey. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 1986.
  • Zill, Nicholas. Behavior Problem Scales, Developed from the 1981 Child Health Supplement to the National Health Interview Survey. Washington, DC: Child Trends, Inc.. 1985.

Update Metadata: 2015-08-05 | Issue Number: 3 | Registration Date: 2015-06-30

United States Department of Health and Human Services. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. National Center for Health Statistics (1985): Health Interview Survey, 1981. Version 3. National Health Interview Survey Series. Version: v3. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.