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Research and Development Survey (RANDS)

Young woman running on treadmill in gym
Testing and fine-tuning survey approaches to measure American’s health more accurately
  • Client
    The National Center for Health Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Dates
    2019 - Present

Problem

The federal government needs to constantly refine and improve its health survey research.

Through its Research and Development Survey (RANDS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) addresses two goals:

  • Supplement NCHS’ question evaluation and research program with quantitative methodologies for measuring error
  • Explore the feasibility of using recruited, probability-sampled, commercial survey panels to collect information on national health outcomes

Solution

NORC helps conducts the Research and Development Survey (RANDS) to improve methods of gauging Americans’ health.

Since 2019, NCHS has relied on NORC’s AmeriSpeak® Panel to collect RANDS data. AmeriSpeak’s probability sampling and dual-mode approach (web/phone) allow for better representation and coverage of hard-to-survey population segments such as rural and low-income households, and AmeriSpeak’s non-response follow-up methodology helps maintain the high response rate a federal survey like this requires. AmeriSpeak’s dual mode has the added advantage of allowing NCHS to test question-wording for interviewer-driven phone respondents and self-responding web respondents.

In addition to offering the highest quality panel to address RANDS needs, AmeriSpeak can maximize data privacy by stripping all identifying information as soon as the panelist enters the survey. No personally identifiable can ever be attached to a panelist’s survey responses.

RANDS research topics include access to and use of health care, chronic conditions, general health, health insurance, opioid use, physical activity, psychological distress, smoking, and COVID-19.

RANDS questions have been used for comparisons with the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS), and the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG).

Result

NORC’s work on RANDS is paying several dividends.

 

RANDS is a key part of the federal government’s efforts to improve Americans’ health by harnessing data more efficiently. Using NORC and its AmeriSpeak Panel has ensured that this crucial research is conducted using industry-leading methods for high response, coverage, and full transparency.

 

Because AmeriSpeak is a standing probability-based survey panel that can react quickly, NORC’s RANDS project was particularly helpful when it was deployed during the COVID-19 pandemic to provide estimates on such topics as the loss of work due to the coronavirus and reduced access to specific types of health care.

Learn More About the Study

Fo more information about RANDS, access RANDS data and documentation, and view reports and research articles published about RANDS.

Related

Departments, Centers & Programs

Research Divisions

Solutions

“The goal of this project is to help the CDC improve the way they measure the concepts and behaviors in their surveys. Hundreds of millions of public dollars go into crucial, very expensive, and high-quality surveys that the CDC conducts to track public health in America. Our work on RANDS is to help them ensure that those measures are as perfect as possible.”

Senior Director of Client Services

“The goal of this project is to help the CDC improve the way they measure the concepts and behaviors in their surveys. Hundreds of millions of public dollars go into crucial, very expensive, and high-quality surveys that the CDC conducts to track public health in America. Our work on RANDS is to help them ensure that those measures are as perfect as possible.”

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