This study is maintained and distributed by the Health and Medical Care Archive (HMCA). HMCA is the official data archive of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Employer Health Insurance Survey [Community Tracking Study and State Initiatives in Health Care Reform Program], 1997 (ICPSR 2935)

Principal Investigator(s):


The objectives of this study were to describe and understand employers' and employees' behavior with respect to employment-based health insurance, to track trends in health insurance provided by employers, and to evaluate selected policies to regulate or expand employment-based health insurance coverage. Sampling was designed to permit estimates for selected communities that are part of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Community Tracking Study (CTS) and for selected states of interest to the RWJF State Initiatives in Health Care Reform Program. Data were collected on employers' offers of health insurance coverage, employees' eligibility and enrollment in health plans, and, for each plan offered, the plan type (HMO, POS, PPO, conventional), premiums (employer and employee contributions), benefits, cost-sharing, and employer self-insurance status. The study also collected information on the characteristics of employers and workers, including the number of employees at the establishment, the number of employees statewide and nationwide, and the distribution of workers by hours worked, age, sex, and earnings.

Series: Community Tracking Study Series

Access Notes

  • One or more files in this study are not available for download due to special restrictions ; consult the restrictions note to learn more. You can apply online for access to the data. A login is required to apply for access. (Instructions on YouTube.)

    For reasons of confidentiality, state and county identifiers, variable Q5 (total number of locations in the United States), variable Q68AA (type of industry), and variable SAMPSTRT (sampling strata) are restricted from general dissemination. Recoded versions of Q5 and Q68AA with limited information are provided in the public-use version of the data. To obtain the state and county identifiers, SAMPSTRT, and the original versions of Q5 and Q68AA, users must complete an Agreement for the Use of Confidential Data, specify the reasons for the request, and obtain IRB approval or notice of exemption for their research. Apply for access to these data through the ICPSR restricted data contract portal, which can be accessed via the study home page.


DS0:  Study-Level Files
DS1:  Firms Data - Download All Files (82.5 MB)
DS2:  Plans Data - Download All Files (100.3 MB)
DS3:  State and County Codes
No downloadable data files available.

Study Description


Long, Stephen H., and M. Susan Marquis. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Employer Health Insurance Survey [Community Tracking Study and State Initiatives in Health Care Reform Program], 1997. ICPSR02935-v2. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2005-07-06.

Persistent URL:

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)


This study was funded by:

  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (028651 and 031565)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:   communities, employee benefits, employers, health insurance, Health Maintenance Organizations, insurance coverage, insurance policies, private health insurance, workers

Geographic Coverage:   United States

Time Period:  

  • 1996--1997

Date of Collection:  

  • 1996--1997

Universe:   In the 48 contiguous states and the District of Columbia, all private business establishments except self-employed persons who had no employees, all state and substate governments with at least one employee, and all federal government employees.

Data Types:   administrative records data, survey data

Data Collection Notes:

The data are comma-delimited for Parts 1 and 2, and blank-delimited for Part 3.

Parts 1-3 can be linked using common ID variables.

The restricted variable SAMPSTRT is needed to compute accurate standard errors.


Sample:   A national probability sample of private and public employers, with a specific emphasis on the 60 communities of the Community Tracking Study and 12 states with substantial rating reforms in the small group market. Samples of private employers were selected from the Dun's Market Identifiers file compiled by Dun and Bradstreet, stratified by 87 geographic locations and numerous business type and size classes. The 1987 and 1992 Census of Government files provided the frame for substate government employers. Data about state employees were obtained from each state government. Data about federal employees were obtained from a file of federal employees formed from information provided by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Office of Personnel Management.

Mode of Data Collection:   computer-assisted telephone interview (CATI), mail questionnaire, record abstracts


Original ICPSR Release:  

Version History:

  • 2006-03-30 File CB02935AP.ALL.PDF was removed from any previous datasets and flagged as a study-level file, so that it will accompany all downloads.
  • 2006-03-30 File CB02935.ALL.PDF was removed from any previous datasets and flagged as a study-level file, so that it will accompany all downloads.
  • 2005-07-06 SPSS setup files for Parts 1 and 2 have been added to the collection and the SAS setup files have been enhanced.
  • 2001-05-29 Part 3, which contains state and county identifiers, has been added to the collection as a restricted file.
  • 2001-04-12 Descriptions of selected SAMPSTRT codes have been added to the documentation. These descriptions cover only the Community Tracking Study (CTS) strata and constitute a crosswalk between SAMPSTRT and the 60 CTS sites.

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