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The National Survey of Children's Health

The National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH) provides rich data on multiple, intersecting aspects of children’s lives—including physical and mental health, access to quality health care, and the child’s family, neighborhood, school, and social context. The National Survey of Children's Health is funded and directed by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB). A revised version of the survey was conducted as a mail and web-based survey by the Census Bureau in 2016, 2017 and is in progress for 2018. Among other changes, the 2016 National Survey of Children’s Health integrated two surveys: the previous NSCH and the National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs (NS-CSHCN). See the MCHB website for more information on the 2016 National Survey of Children's Health administration, methodology, survey content, and data availability.  

The previous version of the NSCH was conducted three times between 2003 and 2012.
In 2003, 2007, and 2011/12, the NSCH was conducted using telephone methodology, and was conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control under the direction and sponsorship of the federal Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB).

The full 2016 NSCH public-use file (PUF) is available on the Census Bureau's NSCH page. Additionally, national and state estimates for all Title V National Performance Measures (NPMs) and National Outcome Measures (NOMs) from the 2016 NSCH are available on the interactive data query. A fully cleaned and coded dataset and codebook is available from the DRC Data Set Request Page.

The 2016-2017 NSCH data will be available in fall 2018. The NOMs and NPMs were released on October 1st, 2018, and the full dataset will be available in early November, 2018. The fully cleaned and coded dataset and codebook will be available in December 2018. The 2017 single-year NSCH data will be available in spring 2019.

The Data Resource Center takes the results from the NSCH and makes them easily accessible to parents, researchers, community health providers and anyone interested in maternal and child health. Data on this site are for the nation and each of the 50 states plus the District of Columbia. State and national data can be further refined to assess differences by race/ethnicity, income, type of health insurance, and a variety of other important demographic and health status characteristics.  Additional resources on the survey can be found on the following pages:

Survey Design and Sponsorship Maternal and Child Health Bureau at the Health Resources and Services Administration in partnership with Census Bureau, National Center for Health Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control, Child and Adolescent Health Measurement Initiative, and a National Technical Expert Panel
Data Collection 2016, 2017: Census Bureau
2003, 2007, 2011/12: National Center for Health Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Geographic areas Nationwide, all 50 states and the District of Columbia
Periodicity Yearly survey beginning in 2016
Previous surveys conducted in 2003, 2007, 2011/12 
Population sampled Non-institutionalized children in the US ages 0-17 years
Sample size range  2017: Nationally: 21,599; State: between 343 - 454
2016: Nationally: 50,212; State: between 638-1351
2003, 2007, 2011/12: Nationally: between 91,000 and 102,000; State: between 1,800-2,200
Representative  Weighted to be representative of the US population of non-institutionalized children ages 0-17
Topics  Physical and emotional health; factors that may relate to well-being of children, including medical home, family interactions, parental health, school experiences, and safe neighborhoods