Although you may be familiar with the National Medicare Provider and Review (MedPAR) data, the Standard Analytical Files (SAFs) offer a more detailed level of claims information. There are SAFs not only for inpatient hospital activity but also for outpatient, skilled nursing, hospice care, home health care, durable medical equipment and office visits. These datasets can be linked at a patient-level and allow for more comprehensive analysis of utilization and treatment trends. We can utilize this data to track patients, physicians, and facilities over the course of years, to identify cost, reimbursement, and coverage information, and to identify various aspects of Medicare claims such as complications and comorbidities, demographics, admission and discharge locations, and much more.
The Nationwide Inpatient Sample (NIS) is the largest all-payer inpatient care database in the United States. It contains data from approximately 8 million hospital stays each year. The NIS contains all discharge data from over 1,000 hospitals located in almost all 50 states, approximating a 20-percent stratified sample of U.S. hospitals. The NIS is the only national hospital database containing charge information on all patients, regardless of payer, including persons covered by Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance, and the uninsured. The NIS’s large sample size enables analyses of rare conditions, such as congenital anomalies; uncommon treatments, such as organ transplantation; and special patient populations, such as the uninsured. Because of the statistical sampling methodology used to collect the NIS, it is possible to extrapolate charges and utilization to the total national level.
The Nationwide Emergency Department Sample (NEDS) is the largest all payer emergency department (ED) database in the United States. It contains discharge data on over 31 million emergency department visits from 950 hospitals located in 34 States and the District of Columbia, approximating a 20-percent stratified sample of U.S. hospital-based emergency departments. Like the NIS, the NEDS is the only national emergency department database containing charge information on all patients, regardless of payer, including persons covered by Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance, and the uninsured.
The Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) is a set of large-scale surveys of families and individuals, their medical providers, and employers across the United States. MEPS collects data on the specific health services that Americans use, how frequently they use them, the cost of these services, and how they are paid for, as well as data on the cost, scope, and breadth of health insurance held by and available to U.S. workers. MEPS includes data on prescriptions and pharmacies.
The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is a program of studies which was designed to assess both the health and the nutritional status of adults and children in the United States. The NHANES survey is unique in that it combines both interviews and physical examinations. The NHANES interview includes demographic, socioeconomic, dietary, and health-related questions. The examination component consists of medical, dental, and physiological measurements, as well as laboratory tests administered by medical personnel.
The National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG) gathers information on family life, marriage and divorce, pregnancy, infertility, use of contraception, and men’s and women’s health. The survey results are used by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and others to plan health services and health education programs, and to do statistical studies of families, fertility, and health.