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Mar 15 -- The U.S. Census Bureau, Department of Commerce, invites comments to OMB by April 19, 2024 regarding proposed revisions to the 2024 National Survey of Children's Health. [Comments due 30 days after submission to OMB on March 20.]

The National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH) enables the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) along with supplemental sponsoring agencies, states, and other data users to produce national and state-based estimates on the health and well-being of children, their families, and their communities as well as estimates of the prevalence and impact of children with special health care needs.

Data will be collected using one of two modes. The first mode is a web instrument (Centurion) survey that contains the screener and topical instruments. The web instrument first will take the respondent through the screener questions. If the household screens into the study, the respondent will be taken directly into one of the three age-based topical sets of questions. The second mode is a mailout/mailback of a self-administered paper-and-pencil interviewing (PAPI) screener instrument followed by a separate mailout/mailback of a PAPI age-based topical instrument.

The National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH) is a large-scale (sample size is approximately 375,000 addresses) national survey with approximately 292,500 addresses included in the base production survey and approximately 82,500 addresses included as part of fourteen separate state-based or region-based oversamples. As in prior cycles of the NSCH, there remain two key, non-experimental design elements. The first non-experimental design element is the use of an unconditional incentive ($5) in the initial screener and topical invitations. For the initial screener invitation, 90% of sampled addresses receive the cash incentive; the remaining 10% (the control) do not receive an incentive. This approach is used to consistently monitor the effectiveness of the cash incentive each cycle. The second non-experimental design element is a data collection procedure based on the block group-level paper-only response probability used to identify households (30% of the sample) that would be more likely to respond by paper and send them a paper questionnaire in the initial mailing and every nonresponse follow-up mailing.

The 2024 NSCH will also include a targeted secondary unconditional incentive test to encourage response from a subset of the sample that started the web questionnaire but did not finish. Prior cycles of the survey have included a $5 unconditional cash incentive with both the initial screener mailing as well as the initial paper topical mailing as outlined in the paragraph above. The incentive has proven to be a cost-effective intervention for increasing survey response and reducing nonresponse bias.

In order to inform decision making around various priorities, some stakeholders have shown interest in sponsoring an oversample of addresses as part of the annual NSCH administration. Currently, thirteen states (California, Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming) and one region (Atlanta, GA) are moving forward with a state- or region-based oversample option as part of the 2024 NSCH. Oversamples will provide sponsors with more robust data for analysis and planning at the state or regional level. The oversamples can be classified as either a general state-wide oversample or sub-state oversample. The state-wide oversample increases the total number of sampled addresses within a given state and will be distributed proportionately across the state, following the same methodology as the production sample. State-level estimates of rare outcomes could be evaluated from this larger sample. The sub-state oversample increases sample representation for a subset of the state population. In some cases, the oversample is designed to produce a sufficiently large sample from a region or regions within a state (e.g., the Atlanta metro area). In other cases, the oversample targets geographic areas with greater representation of specific minority populations.

NSCH Census: https://www.census.gov/nsch
NSCH HRSA: https://mchb.hrsa.gov/data-research/national-survey-childrens-health
NSCH Child and Adolescent Health Measurement Initiative: https://www.childhealthdata.org/learn-about-the-nsch/NSCH
Census submission to OMB: https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=202403-0607-004 Click IC List for information collection instrument, View Supporting Statement for technical documentation. Submit comments through this webpage.
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2024-05609

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

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