0 votes
asked ago by (38.8k points)
Oct 5 -- The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) invites comments to OMB by November 4, 2022 regarding the proposed information collection project “Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) COVID-19 Changes.”

The Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) consists of the following three components and has been conducted annually since 1996:

• Household Component (MEPS-HC): A sample of households participating in the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) in the prior calendar year are interviewed 5 times over a 2 and one-half (2.5) year period. These 5 interviews yield 2 years of information on use of, and expenditures for, health care, sources of payment for that health care, insurance status, employment, health status and health care quality.

• Medical Provider Component (MEPS-MPC): The MEPS-MPC collects information from medical and financial records maintained by hospitals, physicians, pharmacies and home health agencies named as sources of care by household respondents.

• Insurance Component (MEPS-IC): The MEPS-IC collects information on establishment characteristics, insurance offerings and premiums from employers. The MEPS-IC is conducted by the Census Bureau for AHRQ and is cleared separately.

This request is for the MEPS-HC only. The purpose of this request is to update questions related to COVID-19 in MEPS. New round 1 questions on COVID-19 capture information on whether household members have ever had COVID-19 and when they most recently had COVID-19. Follow-up questions in later rounds determine if household members have had COVID-19 in the interview reference period. This study is being conducted by AHRQ through its contractors, Westat and RTI International.

The questions will be asked of all MEPS sample members with a single household respondent reporting for the household. The first two questions serve as gate questions and only respondents who report having a COVID-19 diagnosis in the relevant time period will receive follow-up questions about the timing of their most recent infection. These questions will be administered in the existing Priority Conditions Enumeration section of MEPS, which includes a similar series of questions about whether household members have ever been diagnosed with certain medical conditions.

Historically, MEPS has been conducted using Computer Assisted Personal Interviewing (CAPI) where field interviews conduct interviews with household respondents in person. However, MEPS is currently being conducted via multiple modes, including face-to-face, phone, and virtual interviewing, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The information collected on COVID-19 diagnoses will undergo editing and be reviewed for data quality, including consistency with publicly available sources of data on COVID-19 infections. Additionally, the resulting variables will be included on the annual MEPS full-year consolidated public use data files after being assessed for any potential disclosure concerns. The new CAPI questions collecting information about COVID-19 will be folded into the regular processing stream of MEPS data to produce estimates of health care utilization and expenditures. The information collected on COVID-19 diagnoses will be used to compare healthcare utilization and expenditures between those who have had confirmed COVID-19 and those who have not. Additionally, the information collected on the timing of recent infections can be used to either include or exclude recent infections from calendar year or round-specific estimates of healthcare utilization and expenditures. This allows researchers to examine both shorter-term and longer-term impacts of a COVID-19 diagnosis on healthcare utilization and expenditures.

The new CAPI questions collecting information about COVID-19 will be folded into the regular processing stream of MEPS data to produce estimates of health care utilization and expenditures.  The information collected on COVID-19 diagnoses will be used to compare healthcare utilization and expenditures between those who have had confirmed COVID-19 and those who have not.  Additionally, the information collected on the timing of recent infections can be used to either include or exclude recent infections from calendar year or round-specific estimates of healthcare utilization and expenditures.  This allows researchers to examine both shorter-term and longer-term impacts of a COVID-19 diagnosis on healthcare utilization and expenditures.

The first two questions are taken from the 2022 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), with minor adjustments to account for a single household respondent in MEPS and multiple rounds of interviewing.    
 
MEPS-HC https://meps.ahrq.gov/survey_comp/household.jsp
MEPS submission to OMB: https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=202209-0935-003 Click IC List for data collection instruments, View Supporting Statement for technical documentation. Submit comments through this webpage.
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2022-21624

For AEA members wishing to submit comments, "A Primer on How to Respond to Calls for Comment on Federal Data Collections" is available at https://www.aeaweb.org/content/file?id=5806

Please log in or register to answer this question.

...