ACCESSELIG indicates whether individuals were eligible to receive the Access to Care section questions. To be eligible to receive the Access to Care section questions, individuals had to be current, non-institutionalized members of the responding unit in Round 2 for panel members in relative year 1 (RELYR = 1) and Round 4 for panel members in relative year 2 (RELYR = 2). The only exception to this is 1997. In 1997, only members of Panel 2 are administered the Access to Care section in Round 1. This means that members of Panel 1, who were first administered the Access to Care section in Round 2 in 1996, are only asked the Access to Care section once because it is not administered to them in Round 4 in 1997.
The Access to Care section gathers information on usual source of care for all family members, characteristics of usual source of care health providers, and barriers family members have faced in obtaining needed health care.
IPUMS MEPS reports the universe for each variable based on a thorough review of the original MEPS documentation. Investigating the data may reveal cases that do not meet the stated universe. Users are encouraged to validate universes for their analyses.
Content Covered in the Access to Care Section
Below is a list of content areas covered in the Access to Care section. Please see the variable linked for each content area for a full list of variables pertaining to that topic.
- Respondent's language and nativity status (LANGSPEAK)
- Reasons the respondent does not have a usual source of care (USUALPL)
- Characteristics of the respondent's usual source of care provider (USCPRFAC)
- Reasons the respondent goes to a hospital as their usual source of care (WHYUSCHOSP)
- Difficulty of traveling to usual source of care provider (TYPUSCTRANS)
- Reasons the respondent goes to their usual source of care (USCPRNEW)
- Availability of the respondent's usual source of care provider (USCPRNGTWKD)
- Respondent's satisfaction with their usual source of care provider (USCPROTHCARE)
- Family members' access to care (USCCHNG)
- Reasons the respondent had difficulties obtaining needed medical care (DIFCARFM)
- Respondent was unable to obtain or delayed getting needed medical care, dental care, or prescription medicine (UNMTNDMC)
Codes and Frequencies
Users should note that the Access to Care variables are not designed to yield full-year estimates in 1997, as the section is only administered in Round 2 instead of Rounds 2 and 4. The 1997 AHRQ documentation advises that "The 1997 Access to Care variables cannot be used to make full-year estimates, but can be useful in such analyses as trend analyses, or for enhancing subgroup analyses. These variables may be of particular interest because of the 1997 oversample of populations (such as poverty, children with activity limitations, adults with functional limitations, high medical expenditure cases, and the elderly) where access issues are particularly relevant" (C-16). Because ACCESSELIG is only collected in Round 2 in 1997 instead of Rounds 2 and 4, ACCESSELIG cannot be used to make a full-year estimate in 1997. Otherwise, this variable is comparable over time.
- 1996-2021: All persons.
- 1996-2021 : PERWEIGHT