National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 1990: Drug Mentions (ICPSR 6298)

Published: May 20, 1994

Principal Investigator(s):
United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Center for Health Statistics


Version V1

This data collection is part of a series of surveys that offers information on patients' visits to a national sample of office-based physicians. The National Ambulatory Medical Care Surveys collected information on all drugs/medications ordered, administered, or provided during the visits. The data items include the medication code, generic name and code, brand name, entry status, prescription status, federal controlled substance status, composition status, related ingredient codes, and demographic items such as age, sex, race, and ethnicity.

United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Center for Health Statistics. National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 1990:  Drug Mentions. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1994-05-20.

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In preparing the data tape(s) for this collection, the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) has removed direct identifiers and characteristics that might lead to identification of data subjects. As an additional precaution, NCHS requires, under Section 308(d) of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 242m), that data collected by NCHS not be used for any purpose other than statistical analysis and reporting. NCHS further requires that analysts not use the data to learn the identity of any persons or establishments and that the director of NCHS be notified if any identities are inadvertently discovered. ICPSR member institutions and other users ordering data from ICPSR are expected to adhere to these restrictions.



Per agreement with NCHS, ICPSR distributes the data file(s) and technical documentation in this collection in their original form as prepared by NCHS.

Stratified multistage probability design. In the first stage, the PSUs were selected by a modified probability proportional-to-size procedure using separate sampling frames for SMSAs and for nonmetropolitan counties. The second stage consisted of a probability sample of practicing physicians selected from the master files maintained by the AMA and AOA. Within each PSU, all eligible physicians were stratified by 15 specialty groups. The final stage was the selection of patient visits within the annual practices of sample physicians. This involved two steps. First, the total physician sample was divided into 52, with each physician randomly assigned to one of the 52 weeks in the survey year. Second, a systematic random sample of visits was selected by the physician during the assigned week.

Office visits to nonfederally employed physicians classified by the American Medical Association (AMA) or the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) as "office-based, patient care" (excluding specialties of anesthesiology, pathology, and radiology), from 112 Primary Sampling Units (PSUs) in the United States.


survey data




  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.

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This study is maintained and distributed by the National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA), the aging program within ICPSR. NACDA is sponsored by the National Institute on Aging (NIA) at the National Institutes of Heath (NIH).