4840.0 - Microdata: Patient Experiences in Australia, 2011-12 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 14/02/2014   
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TableBuilder files are released in accordance with the conditions specified in the Statistics Determination section of the Census and Statistics Act 1905 (CSA). This ensures that confidentiality is maintained whilst enabling micro level data to be released. More information on the confidentiality practices associated with TableBuilder can be found on the Confidentiality page.

For information on the institutional environment of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), including the legislative obligations of the ABS, financing and governance arrangements, and mechanisms for scrutiny of ABS operations, please see ABS Institutional Environment.


Data on Patient Experiences in Australia (PEx) were collected as part of the 2011–12 Multipurpose Household Survey (MPHS). The MPHS is a supplement to the monthly Labour Force Survey (LFS) and is designed to collect annual statistics on a small number of self-contained topics. The scope of the LFS is restricted to people aged 15 years and over and excludes members of the permanent defence forces; certain diplomatic personnel of overseas governments usually excluded from census and estimated resident populations; overseas residents in Australia; and members of non-Australian defence forces (and their dependants). Refer to Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0) for further information regarding the LFS. In addition, the 2011–12 MPHS excluded households in Indigenous Communities and people living in non-private dwellings such as hotels, university residences, students at boarding schools, patients in hospitals, inmates of prisons and residents of other institutions (e.g. retirement homes, homes for persons with disabilities).

Microdata from the PEx component of the MPHS are available in TableBuilder. The microdata contains information about a range of indicators measuring the experiences of patients with health services in Australia (GPs, medical specialists, dental professionals, pathology and imaging tests, emergency departments and hospital admissions), as well as demographic, socio-economic, education and employment characteristics. Information was collected from one person selected at random in each selected household.

For more information, see Microdata: Patient Experiences in Australia, 2011–12 (cat. no. 4840.0).


PEx is collected annually via the MPHS with enumeration undertaken over the financial year period from July to June. The most recent PEx was conducted throughout Australia from July 2012 to June 2013. The ABS has been conducting similar surveys on an annual basis since 2009.

The survey reference period for PEx is 12 months prior to the survey interview. The 2011–12 data relate to patients' experience with health services occurring at some time between July 2010 and June 2012. Data from the 2011–12 PEx topic (in the form of a Data Cube) were released on 23 November 2012.


The microdata contains finer levels of detail of data items than what is otherwise published in other formats, for example, in Patient Experiences in Australia: Summary of Findings, 2011–12 (cat. no. 4839.0). For more information on the level of detail available, see the associated data item list in the Downloads tab of this product.

Steps are taken to confidentialise the data made available on TableBuilder in such a way as to maximise the usefulness of the content while maintaining the confidentiality of respondents selected in the survey. As a result, it may not be possible to exactly reconcile all the statistics produced from the microdata with other published statistics. Further information about the steps taken to confidentialise the microdata is available through the following link: TableBuilder confidentiality.

Users of MPHS data should also note that all sample surveys are subject to error which can be broadly categorised as either sampling error or non-sampling error.

Sampling error occurs because a sample, rather than the entire population, is surveyed. One measure of the likely difference resulting from not including all dwellings in the survey is given by the standard error. There are about two chances in three that a sample estimate will differ by less than one standard error from the figure that would have been obtained if all dwellings had been included in the survey, and about nineteen chances in twenty that the difference will be less than two standard errors.

Non-sampling error arises from inaccuracies in collecting, recording and processing the data. Every effort is made to minimise reporting error by the careful design of questionnaires, intensive training and supervision of interviewers, and efficient data processing procedures. Non-sampling error also arises because information cannot be obtained from all persons selected in the survey.


The PEx Survey was conducted for the first time in 2009, available through the following link: Health Services: Patient Experiences in Australia, 2009 (cat. no. 4839.0.55.001). The 2009 survey was conducted over a six month period from July to December, whereas the 2010–11 and subsequent surveys were conducted over 12 months. The 2009 survey had a much smaller sample than subsequent PEx surveys. The most recent PEx Survey was published on 21 November 2013, available through the following link: Patient Experiences in Australia: Summary of Findings, 2012–13 (cat. no. 4839.0).

Much of the content of the three PEx surveys conducted by the ABS in 2009, 2010–11 and 2011–12 is comparable. There are differences however, as later surveys have required ongoing development to maintain and improve the integrity of the data. There are also differences in the subject matter covered in the different PEx surveys.

The Explanatory Notes section of both Patient Experiences in Australia: Summary of Findings, 2010–11 (cat. no. 4839.0) and Patient Experiences in Australia: Summary of Findings, 2011–12 (cat. no. 4839.0) provide more detailed information on the differences between the PEx surveys over time.


The information within this product should be referred to when using the microdata. It contains information including Survey methodology, File structure, Using the TableBuilder, Conditions of use and the Data item list.

The Explanatory Notes section of the Patient Experiences in Australia: Summary of Findings, 2011–12 (cat. no. 4839.0) includes information on survey objectives, survey methods and design, data quality and interpretation, output data items, availability of results and comparability with previous surveys.


Microdata products are available to approved users. Users wishing to access the microdata should read the How to apply for Microdata web page, before applying for access through MiCRO. Users should also familiarise themselves with information available via the Microdata web pages.

A full list of available microdata can be viewed via the List of expected and available Microdata.

Patient Experiences in Australia, 2011–12 can be accessed using TableBuilder.

Any questions regarding access to microdata can be forwarded to microdata.access@abs.gov.au or phone (02) 6252 7714.