Research Datasets for CAHPS Surveys
In response to requests from researchers interested in using CAHPS survey data for research purposes, AHRQ has established a process for researchers to request de-identified data files from the CAHPS Databases.
The CAHPS Databases currently include respondent- and organization-level data from the:
- CAHPS Health Plan Survey.
- CAHPS Clinician & Group Survey.
These data do not identify or permit re-identification of individual respondents or participating organizations.
How To Request De-Identified Data
To request de-identified CAHPS data from the CAHPS Databases, please submit the following:
- CAHPS De-Identified Data Research Abstract Form (Word, 30 KB) – Please complete and submit this form to outline the proposed use of the data.
- Sample CAHPS De-Identified Research Abstract Form (PDF, 215 KB) - Shows the form completed with sample information and instructions.
- CAHPS De-Identified Research Dataset Contents (PDF, 175 KB) - Shows the types of variables included in the de-identified datasets.
- CAHPS Data Release Agreement (PDF, 180 KB) – Please complete and sign the Data Release Agreement.
- For questions or to apply for De-identified Data:
- Email CAHPSDatabase@westat.com (Subject line: CAHPS De-Identified Data Request)
All completed research abstract forms are reviewed by AHRQ and its contractor, Westat, in accordance with the criteria outlined below. The review period for de-identified data requests is up to 30 days.
Conditions for Denying a Request for De-identified Data
Requests for access to de-identified data files may be denied under any of the following conditions:
- If the central purpose of the study is NOT for research. Valid purposes for using de-identified data do NOT include the use of data for public reporting, proprietary, commercial, or competitive purposes, or to determine the rights, benefits, or privileges of organizations participating in a Database. An example of commercial or competitive purposes includes, but is not limited to, combining the requested Database data with other data sources to report together for commercial or public reporting purposes.
- If the research objectives are not feasible using the requested data.
- If the data processing required to produce the requested data files places an unusually heavy burden on Database staff.
If concerns about a submitted Research Abstract are raised during the review process, the comments from reviewers will be sent to the requester. Data requesters may make modifications and re-submit the Research Abstract for review.
Individuals receiving data from the CAHPS Databases are required to include the following acknowledgment in any report, publication, or presentation using that data:
“The CAHPS® data used in this analysis was provided by the CAHPS Databases. The CAHPS Databases are funded by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and administered by Westat under Contract No. GS-00F-009DA/75Q80123F80005.”
Copies of all publications and presentations using data from the CAHPS Databases must be sent to CAHPSDatabase@westat.com.
Approval of data access does not constitute endorsement by AHRQ or Westat of the proposed research project, study findings, or recommendations of the research team.
For More Information
If you have questions about applying for de-identified CAHPS survey data, please email: CAHPSDatabase@westat.com (Subject: De-identified CAHPS data).