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Activity Number: 473 - Advances in Measuring Health Care Quality and Disparities
Type: Topic Contributed
Date/Time: Wednesday, August 1, 2018 : 8:30 AM to 10:20 AM
Sponsor: Health Policy Statistics Section
Abstract #328680 Presentation
Title: Using Ancillary Sociodemographics to Estimate Probabilities That Potentially Ambiguous Responses to Sexual Orientation Survey Items Were Intended to Indicate Sexual Minority Status
Author(s): Marc Elliott*
Companies: RAND

Measuring sexual minority status in population surveys may result in misclassification due to the low prevalence of categories needed to capture a range of identities. While some response options clearly map to sexual minority (e.g., "gay") or non-sexual minority status (e.g., "heterosexual"), other options may not for respondents unfamiliar with the category names or whose preferred response does not appear. We use ancillary sociodemographic information from 2013-2014 National Health Interview Surveys to predict the probability of self-identifying as a sexual minority among those selecting "something else [SE]" or "don't know the answer [DK]". The odds of identifying as sexual minority among SE/DK respondents are higher for SE and urban respondents but lower for older, Hispanic, and low-income/missing-income respondents. We develop respondent-level probabilities of sexual minority status to represent sexual minorities without excluding or misclassifying potentially ambiguous responses and compare the effects of three health disparity estimation strategies: 1. using probabilities; 2. hard-classifying SE as sexual minority/DK as non-sexual minority; 3. dropping DE/SK cases.

Authors who are presenting talks have a * after their name.

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