Extending Health Insurance to the Working Poor: An Assessment of Health Status and Health Care Utilization Effects Among New York City Home Health Attendants, February 1990-June 1991 (ICPSR 9774)

Published: Jan 12, 2006

Principal Investigator(s):
Beth Weitzman, New York University. Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service


Version V1

Using a pre- and post-program design, this survey studied newly-hired home health attendants and their families, most of whom were without medical insurance until they became eligible for health benefits through their union. To assess changes in health status and health services utilization, the attendants were interviewed at the point of union enrollment, and again nine months later. The interview taken prior to enrollment in the benefits program elicited information about concern over health, recent injuries, and self-assessed health status, e.g., the presence or absence of specific health conditions such as diabetes, ulcers, arthritis, stomach trouble, high blood pressure, allergies, asthma, and back problems. Respondents were also queried about the extent and type of previous health coverage (including Medicare and disability insurance), limitations of daily functioning due to poor health, and recent health care utilization, including hospitalization, emergency room usage, and routine ambulatory care. The latter included questions about out-of-pocket expenses and the type of health services received, such as X-rays, CAT scans, sonograms, laboratory tests, electrocardiograms, stress tests, surgery, and setting of bones. Other questions addressed utilization issues of particular relevance to the New York City area, e.g., the use of city hospital clinics. The post-enrollment survey included parallel follow-up questions, as well as questions regarding the respondent's employment status and current benefits. Additional variables in the data collection include respondent's race, Hispanic origin, place of birth, past work experience, date of birth, and sex, plus the sex and dates of birth of family members.

Weitzman, Beth. Extending Health Insurance to the Working Poor: An Assessment of Health Status and Health Care Utilization Effects Among New York City Home Health Attendants, February 1990-June 1991. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2006-01-12. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR09774.v1

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Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (15105)

As explained in the ICPSR Processing Note in the codebook, some variables are restricted from general dissemination for reasons of confidentiality. Users interested in obtaining these data 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.

1990-02 -- 1991-06

The study sample is a nonprobability sample of home health attendants. A distinct group of newly-hired home attendants was identified and judged to be representative of home health attendants. These approximately 1,700 newly-hired home attendants were invited, by mail, to come to union headquarters for enrollment and benefits orientation, and also to participate in a study of health status and utilization. This group of 1,700 comprised all health attendants newly hired during the period beginning in February and ending in August 1990. The pre-enrollment survey was administered to these attendants as they came to the union headquarters. A total of 475 attendants were interviewed. Because of the constant flow of home attendants into the union headquarters for enrollment, no attempt was made to interview every newly-hired home attendant but rather to interview a substantial number as they became available. Approximately nine months later, follow-up interviews were obtained with 360 of the 475 sample members.

Home health attendants in New York City.

personal interviews and telephone interviews

survey data



2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 6 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.

2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 5 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.

1998-04-20 The codebook is now available as a PDF file.


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