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National Nursing Home Survey, 1985

Resource Type
Dataset : survey data
  • United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Center for Health Statistics
Other Title
  • Version 2 (Subtitle)
Collective Title
  • National Nursing Home Survey Series
Publication Date
Free Keywords
administrative costs; assisted living; assisted living facilities; health care costs; health care facilities; health history; health services utilization; health status; institutional care; labor costs; long term care; mortality rates; nursing homes; older adults; patient care; personnel
  • Abstract

    The 1985 National Nursing Home Survey was designed to gather a variety of data on all types of nursing homes providing nursing care in the United States. In this collection data are available on nursing and related care facilities, services provided by the facilities, residents of the nursing homes, and discharges. Nursing home care is examined from the perspectives of both the recipients and the providers of services. Information about patients, both current and discharged, includes basic demographic characteristics, marital status, place of residence prior to admission, health status, services received, and, for discharges, the outcomes of care. A family member of both current and discharged patients was contacted by telephone to obtain data on socioeconomic status and prior episodes of health care. Facility-level data include basic characteristics such as size, ownership, Medicare/Medicaid certification, occupancy rate, and days of care provided.
  • Table of Contents


    • DS0: Study-Level Files
    • DS1: Facility Questionnaire
    • DS2: Nursing Staff Questionnaire
    • DS3: Current Resident Questionnaire
    • DS4: Discharged Resident Questionnaire
    • DS5: Expense Questionnaire
    • DS6: Nursing Staff Sampling List
    • DS7: Current Resident Sampling List
    • DS8: Discharged Resident Sampling List
    • DS9: Next-of-Kin Questionnaire
Temporal Coverage
  • 1984-08 / 1986-01
    Time period: 1984-08--1986-01
  • 1985-08 / 1986-01
    Collection date: 1985-08--1986-01
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Sampled Universe
All types of nursing homes providing some level of nursing care in the coterminous United States as defined by the 1982 National Master Facility Inventory (NMFI) or the 1982 Complement Survey of the NMFI, nursing homes opened for business from 1982 through June 1984 and identified by the NCHS Agency Reporting System (NCHS, 1968), and hospital-based nursing homes identified in records of the Health Care Financing Administration.
Stratified two-stage probability design. The first stage was the selection of facilities, and the second stage was a selection of residents, discharges, and registered nurses from the sample facilities. The sampling procedure yielded a nationally representative sample of 1,220 nursing and related-care homes. The data collection includes three files containing information about sampling within the facility. These sampling files include facility totals of registered nurses, current residents, discharged residents, and the number of each sampled per facility. Interviews were completed with 81 percent of the residents' next-of-kin.
Collection Mode
  • Per agreement with NCHS, ICPSR distributes the data file(s) and technical documentation in this collection in their original form as prepared by NCHS. The approximate age distribution for 5,200 of the 5,238 current residents sampled was: less than 65 years (N = 554), 65-69 years (N = 266), 70-74 years (N = 433), 75-79 years (N = 709), 80-84 years (N = 993), 85-89 years (N = 1,065), 90-94 years (N = 903), 95 and older years (N = 277). Approximate age at discharge for 5,928 of 6,017 discharged residents sampled was: less than 65 years (N = 594), 65-69 years (N = 300), 70-74 years (N = 526), 75-79 years (N = 870), 80-84 years (N = 1,203), 85-89 years (N = 1,222), 90-94 years (N = 826), 95 and older (N = 387). The National Institute on Aging has funded a follow-up of the 1985 National Nursing Home Survey, extending the period of observation by 30 months. The follow-up consists of two waves of Computer Assisted Telephone Interviews [CATI] with surviving residents, next-of-kin, and facility administrators for approximately 6,000 nursing home residents at 18 months and 4,600 at 30 months. The follow-up will enable longitudinal analyses on health, services, and outcomes of case. Those data will be made available by NCHS at a later date.

2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 10 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 10 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.
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
  • 8914 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR08914.v3
  • Is new version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR08914.v1
  • Falkowski, Paul P.. Volunteer Programming Impact on Long-Term Care Facilities. Dissertation, University of Nebraska. 2013.
  • Shoffner, Joanna. An Analysis of Nursing Home Length of Stay among Working-aged Individuals Aged 18 to 64 Years and the Implications for the Medicaid Program. Dissertation, University of Maryland, Baltimore. 2008.
  • National Center for Health Statistics. Health, United States, 2007. With Chartbook on Trends in the Health of Americans. Hyattsville, MD: United States Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2007.
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  • Alecxih, Lisa. Nursing Home Use by 'Oldest Old' Sharply Declines. Falls Church, VA: The Lewin Group. 2006.
  • Decker, Frederic H.. Nursing Homes, 1977--99: What Has Changed, What Has Not? Facts from the National Nursing Home Surveys. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2005.
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  • Moss, Abigail J., Remsburg, Robin E.. Changes in Use of Voluntary Workers in Nursing Homes: United States, 1985 and 1999. Advance Data: from Vital and Health Statistics.Hyattsville, MD: United States Department of Health and Human Services, National Center for Health Statistics. 2005.
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  • Mechanic, David, McAlpine, Donna D.. Use of Nursing Homes in the Care of Persons With Severe Mental Illness: 1985-1995. Psychiatric Services.51, 354-358.2000.
    • ID: 10.1176/ (DOI)
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    • ID: 10.1377/hlthaff.18.4.146 (DOI)
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    • ID: 10.1177/0164027598202005 (DOI)
  • Lakdawalla, Darius, Philipson, Tomas. The Rise in Old Age Longevity and the Market for Long-Term Care. NBER Working Paper Series.6547, Cambridge, MA: National Bureau of Economic Research. 1998.
    • ID: (URL)
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    • ID: 10.1080/13607869856902 (DOI)
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    • ID: 10.1177/089826439700900404 (DOI)
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    • ID: 10.1177/0049124197025003002 (DOI)
  • Murtaugh, C.M., Kemper, P., Spillman, B.C., Carlson, B.L.. The amount, distribution, and timing of lifetime nursing home use. Medical Care.35, (3), 204-218.1997.
    • ID: 10.1097/00005650-199703000-00003 (DOI)
  • Rothwell, S.T., Bush, M.A., Gottfried, I., Scott, D.M.. The power of the SAS (R) date functions: Creating a utilization history for residents of nursing homes. Proceedings of the Twenty-Second Annual SAS Users Group International Conference.. 1997.
  • Liang, Jersey, Liu, Xian, Tu, Edward, Whitelaw, Nancy. Probabilities and lifetime durations of short-stay hospital and nursing home use in the United States, 1985. Medical Care.34, (10), 1018-1036.1996.
    • ID: 10.1097/00005650-199610000-00004 (DOI)
  • Lupu, Dale Ellen. Patterns and Predictors of Readmission in a National Cohort of Elderly Nursing Home Entrants. Dissertation, Johns Hopkins University. 1996.
  • Rose-Ackerman, Susan. Altruism, nonprofits, and economic theory. Journal of Economic Literature.34, (2), 701 -1996.
  • Choi, Jae-Sung. Inefficiency and Its Determinants in United States Nursing Homes: Does Profit-making Incentive Improve Efficiency?. Dissertation, University of California, Berkeley. 1994.
  • Liu, Korbin. A Data Perspective on Long-Term Care. Gerontologist.34, (4), 476-480.1994.
    • ID: 10.1093/geront/34.4.476 (DOI)
  • Becksague, C., Banerjee, S., Jarvis, W.R.. Infectious-diseases and mortality among United-States nursing-home residents. American Journal of Public Health.83, (12), 1739-1742.1993.
    • ID: 10.2105/AJPH.83.12.1739 (DOI)
  • Burns, B.J., Wagner, H.R., Taube, J.E., Magaziner, J., Permutt, T., Landerman, L.R.. Mental-health-service use by the elderly in nursing-homes. American Journal of Public Health.83, (3), 331-337.1993.
    • ID: 10.2105/AJPH.83.3.331 (DOI)
  • Freedman, Vicki A.. Kin and nursing home lengths of stay: A backward recurrence time approach. Journal of Health and Social Behavior.34, (2), 138-152.1993.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Mehr, D.R., Fries, B.E., Williams, B.C.. How different are VA nursing-home residents. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.41, (10), 1095-1101.1993.
  • Eichmann, M.A., Griffin, B.P., Lyons, J.S., Larson, D.B., Finkel, S.. An estimation of the impact of OBRA-87 on nursing-home care in the United States. Hospital and Community Psychiatry.43, (8), 781-789.1992.
  • Kunkel, Suzanne R., Applebaum, Robert A.. Estimating the Prevalence of Long-Term Disability for an Aging Society. Journals of Gerontology, Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences.47, (5), S253-S260.1992.
  • Praemer, Allan, Fumes, Sylvia, Rice, Dorothy P.. Musculoskeletal Conditions in the United States. Rosemont: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. 1992.
  • Freedman, Vicki A., Wolf, Douglas A., Soldo, Beth J., Stephen, Elizabeth Hervey. Intergenerational Transfers: A Question of Perspective. Gerontologist.31, (5), 640-647.1991.
    • ID: 10.1093/geront/31.5.640 (DOI)
  • Meyer, Madonna Harrington. Universalism vs. Targeting as the Basis of Social Distribution: Gender, Race and Long-term Care in the United States. Dissertation, Florida State University. 1991.
  • Liu, Korbin, Doty, Pamela, Manton, Kenneth G.. Medicaid spenddown in nursing homes. Gerontologist.30, (1), 7-15.1990.
    • ID: 10.1093/geront/30.1.7 (DOI)
  • Mather, David Trigg. Differences between For-profit and Nonprofit Nursing Homes on Several Dimensions of Performance. Dissertation, University of California, Berkeley. 1990.
  • Spence, Denise A., Wiener, Joshua M.. Nursing Home Length of Stay Patterns: Results from the 1985 National Nursing Home Survey. Gerontologist.30, (1), 16-202.1990.
    • ID: 10.1093/geront/30.1.16 (DOI)
  • Felton, Bette Claire Borden. The Organization of Nursing Care and Resident Health Status: The Impact on Nursing Home Costs. Dissertation, University of California, Berkeley. 1989.
  • Wiener, Joshua M., Hanley, Raymond J.. Measuring the Activities of Daily Living among the Elderly: A Guide to National Surveys. Washington, DC: United States Department of Health and Human Services, Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, Office of Disaiblity, Aging, and Long-Term Car. 1989.
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  • Strahan, Genevieve. Characteristics of Registered Nurses in Nursing Homes, Preliminary Data From the 1985 National Nursing Home Survey. Advance Data from Vital and Health Statistics.152, Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 1988.
    • ID: (URL)
  • Hing, Esther. Use of Nursing Homes by the Elderly: Preliminary Data from the 1985 National Nursing Home Survey. Advance Data from Vital and Health Statistics.135, Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 1987.
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  • Sekscenski, Edward S.. Discharges From Nursing Homes: Preliminary Data From the 1985 National Nursing Home Survey. Advance Data from Vital and Health Statistics.142, Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 1987.
    • ID: (URL)

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

United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Center for Health Statistics (1989): National Nursing Home Survey, 1985. Version 2. National Nursing Home Survey Series. Version: v2. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.