Using the CAHPS Name

What "CAHPS" Means

CAHPS stands for Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems. Originally, CAHPS referred to AHRQ's Consumer Assessment of Health Plans Study; however, that name was changed in 2005 to reflect the evolution of the program from its initial focus on enrollees' experiences with health plans to a broader focus on consumers' and patients' experiences with various aspects of the health care system. "CAHPS" is a registered trademark of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

How To Use the CAHPS Name

To Describe the Program

Use the full name "Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS)" to refer to the program. In the text of written documents (journal articles, press coverage, etc.), spell out the name the first time that it appears, followed by CAHPS in parentheses: "Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) program." Please indicate that this is a program of the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

In the Names of Products/Resources

When referring to any survey products or resources developed by or associated with the CAHPS program and its grantees, put the name "CAHPS" first so that it functions like a brand name. For example:

  • CAHPS Hospital Survey
  • CAHPS Health Plan Survey
  • CAHPS products
  • CAHPS Consortium
  • CAHPS Ambulatory Care Improvement Guide

Product Names

In the past, "CAHPS" referred only to a survey for health plan enrollees. Now it refers to a family of surveys. To make survey names easier to read and understand, AHRQ recommends using the CAHPS acronym rather than spelling out the full CAHPS name with the name of a survey (e.g., CAHPS Clinician & Group Survey). You can do this by explaining the acronym first and then using the acronym in the product name. For example: “The Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) program, which is funded by AHRQ, supports use of the CAHPS Clinician & Group Survey.”

Please use these names to refer to CAHPS products:

CAHPS Surveys

  • CAHPS Health Plan Survey
  • CAHPS Clinician & Group Survey
  • CAHPS Surgical Care Survey
  • CAHPS Dental Plan Survey
  • ECHO® Survey (the CAHPS survey of behavioral health services)
  • CAHPS American Indian Survey
  • CAHPS Nursing Home Survey
  • CAHPS Hospital Survey
    • CAHPS Adult Hospital Survey (HCAHPS)
    • CAHPS Child Hospital Survey
  • CAHPS Home Health Care Survey
  • CAHPS Hospice Survey
  • CAHPS In-Center Hemodialysis Survey
  • CAHPS Outpatient and Ambulatory Surgery Survey

Supplemental Item Sets

  • CAHPS Item Set for Children with Chronic Conditions
  • CAHPS Item Set for People With Mobility Impairments
  • CAHPS Cultural Competence Item Set
  • CAHPS Health Literacy Item Set
  • CAHPS Health Information Technology Item Set
  • CAHPS Patient-Centered Medical Home Item Set
Page last reviewed May 2016
Page originally created September 2013
Internet Citation: Using the CAHPS Name. Content last reviewed May 2016. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.