IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

How Survey Design Affects Inference Regarding Health Perceptions and Outcomes

Listed author(s):
  • Anneke Exterkate
  • Robin L. Lumsdaine
Registered author(s):

    This paper considers the role of survey design and question phrasing in evaluating the subjective health assessment responses using the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE) dataset. A unique feature of this dataset is that respondents were twice asked during the survey to evaluate their health on a five-point scale, using two different sets of descriptors to define the five points, with the ordering of which set was first given determined randomly. We find no evidence to refute the assertion that the order was determined by random assignment. Yet we document differences in the response distributions between the two questions, as well as differences in inference in comparing the two populations (those that were asked one question first versus those that were asked the other). We then consider determinants of the degree of concordance between the two questions, as well as the determinants of individuals that provide conflicting responses. There appears to be evidence to suggest that individuals' assessments of their health in response to the second question may be influenced by the battery of health questions that were asked following the first assessment. We find that information in self-assessed health responses is useful in examining health outcomes. Our results suggest that adjusting such responses to take into account framing and sequencing of questions may improve inference. In addition, we show that accounting for survey design may be important in models for predicting outcomes of interest, such as the probability of a major health event.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 17244.

    in new window

    Date of creation: Jul 2011
    Publication status: published as "How Survey Design Affects Self-Assessed Health Responses in the Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe (SHARE)," European Economic Review, 63, pp. 299-307, 2013[with Anneke Exterkate].
    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17244
    Note: AG HC HE
    Contact details of provider: Postal:
    National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.

    Phone: 617-868-3900
    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    in new window

    1. Erik Meijer & Arie Kapteyn & Tatiana Andreyeva, 2008. "Health Indexes and Retirement Modeling in International Comparisons," Working Papers 614, RAND Corporation.
    2. Moum, Torbjoârn, 1992. "Self-assessed health among Norwegian adults," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 35(7), pages 935-947, October.
    3. Cristina Hernandez-Quevedo & Andrew M Jones & Nigel Rice, "undated". "Reporting Bias and Heterogeneity in Self-Assessed Health. Evidence from the British Household Panel Survey," Discussion Papers 04/18, Department of Economics, University of York.
    4. Agar Brugiavini & Tullio Jappelli & Guglielmo Weber, 2002. "The Survey on Health, Aging and Wealth," CSEF Working Papers 86, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
    5. Crossley, Thomas F. & Kennedy, Steven, 2002. "The reliability of self-assessed health status," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 643-658, July.
    6. Erik Meijer & Arie Kapteyn & Tatiana Andreyeva, 2011. "Internationally comparable health indices," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(5), pages 600-619, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17244. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.