12-Item Short Form Survey from the RAND Medical Outcomes Study

The 12-Item Short Form Health Survey (SF-12) was developed for the Medical Outcomes Study (MOS), a multi-year study of patients with chronic conditions. The resulting short-form survey instrument provides a solution to the problem faced by many investigators who must restrict survey length. The instrument was designed to reduce respondent burden while achieving minimum standards of precision for purposes of group comparisons involving multiple health dimensions.

The SF-12 is not available on the RAND Health website. Use of the SF-12 is governed by QualityMetric, which has no affiliation with RAND. RAND Health has put the following MOS short form health surveys in the public domain for non-commercial use, by posting them on the RAND Health Website:

Available Documents

Scoring Instructions for MOS 12-Item Short Form Survey Instrument (SF-12)

Measuring Function and Well-Being: The Medical Outcomes Study Approach (1992)
Stewart AL, Ware JE., eds. (1992)


Other instruments from the Medical Outcomes Study

This website offers a list of all instruments that have been approved by the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Medical Outcomes Trust.


The Veterans RAND 12 Item Health Survey (VR12): What is it and How it is Used (2009)
Iqbal SU, Rogers W, Selim A, Qian S, Lee A, Ren XS, Rothendler J, Miller D, Kazis LE
Center for Health Quality, Outcomes, and Economic Research, A Health Services Research and Development Center of Excellence, VA Medical Center, Bedford, MA, USA


Bibliography for the RAND Medical Outcomes Study