Evaluation of health diary data in the health insurance study

by Kent H. Marquis

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Evaluates the quality of some of the diary and claim data from the first year of the Health Insurance Study. The control group appeared to underreport health service use substantially on both health diaries and on claims. Experimentals appeared to submit claims for up to 98 percent of the outpatient physician services they used. Diary data were somewhat incomplete for experimentals because of form nonresponse, forgetting, and possibly because they did not perceive certain services as separate medical care visits. Diary reports of work loss due to health problems appeared satisfactory, but uncertainty remains about the validity of other restricted activity data.

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