Using Enrollment Records to Evaluate Self-Reports of Monthly Coverage in the Redesigned Current Population Survey Health Insurance Module
This journal article was originally published on January 23, 2024, in Health Services Research.
This article, authored by SHADAC Investigator Dr. Kathleen T. Call alongside colleagues from the U.S. Census Bureau Angela R. Fertig and Joanne Pascale, explores the veracity of self-reports of month-level health insurance coverage in the Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement (CPS ASEC).
The CHIME (Comparing Health Insurance Measurement Error) study used health insurance enrollment records from a large regional Midwest insurer as the sample for primary data collection in spring of 2015. In this study, a sample of individuals enrolled in a range of public and private coverage types (including Medicaid and marketplace) was administered the CPS health insurance module, which included questions about month-level coverage, by type, over a 17–18-month time span. Survey data was then matched to enrollment records covering that same time frame, and concordance between the records and self-reports was assessed.
For 91% of the overall sample, coverage status and type were reported accurately for at least 75% of observed months.
Among those who were continuously covered throughout the 17–18 month observation period (64% of the overall sample), that level of reporting accuracy was observed for 94% of the sample. For those who had censored spells (34% of the overall sample), the figure was 87%. Among those with gaps and/or changes according to the records (2% of the overall sample), for 82% of the group at least 75% of months were reported accurately.
These findings suggest that reporting accuracy of month-level coverage is high - thus, this survey could become a new data source for studying overall dynamics of health insurance coverage, namely the Medicaid unwinding.
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