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CHIS Via Cell Phone

Topics: Cell Phones

An update from the Los Angeles Times on plans by the California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) to reach cell-phone only households with interviews conducted over cell phones:

The biannual health study, which provides data on more than 42,000 of the state's roughly 12 million households, is used to "drive decision-making and to drive the recommendations we make to the Legislature or to the governor," said Sandra Shewry, director of the California Department of Health Care Services.

If data are inaccurate, a survey paints a nonrepresentative picture of populations, which can in turn be used as the basis for an improper allocation of funds or just bad decisions, she said.

"The implications are that if we do not include people with cellphones only, then we are likely to be underreporting un-insurance rates, and we're likely to underreport smoking prevalence rates in the state," survey director David Grant said. The numbers won't be dramatic, he said, "but it will introduce some level of bias in our estimates.

For more information, see my recent posts on the challenges of the missing cell phone only households and lessons learned from pilot studies conducted via cell phone.

 

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