HCFO Webinar Recording Available: Using the American Community Survey for Health Services Research

Start Date: 
March 12, 2013

The American Community Survey (ACS) is an annual, general household survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau. ACS data can provide useful estimates at the national, state, and local levels, including insurance coverage and other demographic indicators such as income, poverty, disability, marital status, education, and occupation. The full ACS sample is roughly 15 times the sample size of the Current Population Survey sample and collects data in all U.S. counties, making it uniquely suited to drilling down to smaller geographic areas and sub-populations. The ACS Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) files can be used to create custom data tables based on individual survey response information. ACS data can also complement other data sources, including claims data, to more comprehensively address financing, coverage and health services research questions.

On March 7, HCFO partnered with the State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC) to host a webinar on best practices for utilizing the American Community Survey for research on health insurance and other topics in health care financing and organization.  The webinar provided an overview of the data source, offered experienced user insights, and illustrated how the data can be used to explore issues related to health care coverage.


  • Joanna Turner, M.S. - SHADAC
  • Elizabeth Lukanen, M.P.H. - SHADAC
  • Genevieve Kenney, Ph.D. - The Urban Institute
  • Victoria Lynch, M.S. - The Urban Institute

A recording of the webinar is available here: